Monday, March 4, 2013

Making up for missed holidays with FONDUE!

My husband and I missed a lot of holidays together while he was in the hospital. He was home in time for Valentine's Day, but we kept it pretty low key. That morning, he visited at the hospital for a small procedure. I wasn't sure if he'd be groggy afterwards, so I didn't want to plan something that might have to be cancelled.

Well, he was just fine afterwards.

I wanted to do something at least a little bit different, but I didn't want to run to the store - I had to work with what I had on hand,

Luckily, I had the perfect thing: fondue.

Back in the stone age, when Bob and I were first dating, we had quite a few fondue parties, but those generally involved a big fondue pot filled with hot oil and plates of meat and vegetables to be cooked.

This time, it was cheese fondue for two, with a big "thanks" to Emmi Roth cheese and Boska. I had worked with both companies before, and i talked to them about a jointly sponsored post on my blog, with Boska providing some sort of cheese tool and Emmi providing the cheese. The companies put their heads together and the answer was my Valentine's dinner.

The fondue pot from Boska is a cute little thing - they call it their Tapas Fondue Set and it includes the ceramic pot, the little wooden stand, two fondue forks, and a tealight that fits under the pot. If you're wondering if a tealight gives off enough heat, let me tell ya, that cheese was plenty hot. But you don't use the tealight to heat the cheese - that's just for keeping it warm. And I guess for a little atmosphere, too.

We had a simple fondue with just chunks of bread for dipping. And if you're wondering why the bread is pink, that's because I used some of my valentine heart bread.

So anyway, the deal is that you heat the cheese first, then put it into the pot. The tealight keeps the cheese warm, and it was actually bubbling after a while. Nice and melty and warm. Mmmmelty... cheese. Like a grilled cheese sandwich, but in a lot of little bites.

Speaking of cheese, Emmi sent a whole selection of fondue cheeses. These things are pretty handy - just heat and serve. All the "extra" fondue ingredients are in the package, and it's ready to be melted. No need for a shredding, grating, or fussing.

Perfect for a quick appetizer or snack. Or when you haven't planned anything for Valentine's Day dinner.

Since Bob's a big fan of blue cheese, we sampled the Gorgonzola fondue cheese first. We still have the original and the Appenzeller to try.

The Gorgonzola didn't hit you in the face with its "blue" flavor, but it had a nice sharpness to it. But still mild enough that I think people who don't care for blues or strong cheeses would still be fine with it.

While the fondue pot was small, I think these would be fun for larger groups, if you set up several different fondue pots with different cheeses and a whole array of dippable things.. Like bread. Or vegetables. Or pretzels. Whatever goes with cheese. And having several different cheeses going all at once would give people a chance to compare them.

AND ... although Emmi is known for cheese. they also sent a chocolate fondue. Mmmm.... chocolate! How can you go wrong with that?

Pretty nice, huh? I hope you had a good Valentine's Day. It was lovely here.

Do you fondue?

Thanks to Emmi and Boska for sponsoring my Valentine's dinner!