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Cheese Fondue

Wine is an important ingredient in fondue. Cheese has a tendency to seize up or get stringy at varying temperatures. But, thanks to the acidity of the wine, it helps to keep the cheese smooth. The saltiness of the Gruyère also helps. If you sense that the cheese is getting too “ropy,” you can save the day either with a splash of wine or a squeeze of lemon juice—don’t add more salt because the cheese is salty enough.

Chef’s Note: In addition to bread cubes, other items good for dipping into the fondue include cooked and peeled baby, new, or fingerling potatoes; broccoli and cauliflower florets, cooked al dente; and whole cherry or grape tomatoes.

This recipe is from Entertaining: Recipes and Inspirations for Gathering with Family and Friends, by The Culinary Institute of America.

CIA's cheese fondue recipe

Ingredients

Makes 4 Servings

  • 1 garlic clove, peeled
  • 1 2/3 cups dry white wine
  • 1 pound grated Gruyère
  • 2 teaspoons cornstarch
  • 1/4 cup Kirsch
  • Ground white pepper, as needed
  • Freshly grated nutmeg, as needed
  • 1 baguette, cut into 1/2-inch cubes
  • 2 apples, cored and cut into 1/2-inch cubes

Directions

  1. Cut the garlic clove in half and rub the inside of the fondue pot with the cut sides of the garlic. Turn the heat to medium under the pot.
  2. Toss the grated cheese with the cornstarch and set aside, reserve for later use.
  3. Add the wine to the fondue pot, turn heat to medium-high, and bring to a simmer. Add the cheese, a handful at a time, waiting for the previous bit to have melted. Stir in a figure-eight pattern rather than in a circle; this will help keep the cheese from becoming too stringy.
  4. When all the cheese has been incorporated, add the Kirsch, white pepper, and a few gratings of nutmeg.
  5. Serve with the bread and apple cubes, keeping the fondue steaming, but not boiling. A fondue pot keeps the fondue warm without letting it get too hot. If you don’t have one, we strongly urge you to borrow one from a friend, and remember to ask for the dipping forks.

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