Meatless Monday: Cheddar and Beer Fondue

There’s something about fondue that’s irresistible. I feel like it always sounds good, even though I know I’ll feel awful after eating it. I’m cheese’s biggest fan and my boyfriend is beer’s. So when we marry the two, it’s a blessed occasion.

I made fondue with my SO’s cousin, Ryan, and his wonderfully fantastic girlfriend Kate. Ryan had never experienced the spiritual awakening known as fondue, so it was fun to cook it for him.

I’ve been using this recipe since my college days (you know, those days that are sooo far gone) and it’s always been a hit. The most memorable time was when I made it for the Oscars. We chowed down on the cheesy goodness while we filled out our ballots and screamed in excitement or horror when winners were announced.

Fondue is super easy to make and filling. It’s great for parties and entertaining and good when you need to use up produce that’s about to go bad in the fridge.

You can get creative with fondue and use whatever dipping foods you want, but here’s what we used:

1 head of cauliflower, steamed

3 florets of broccoli, steamed

baby potatoes, cut in half and steamed

2 Granny Smith apples, cubed

1 fresh baguette, cubed

1 bag of Lil Smokies, heated

1 bellpepper, cut into chunks

2 stalks of celery, sliced into inch-pieces

Tips and Variations: Use cherry tomatoes,steamed baby carrots, gherkin pickles, tortilla chips, pita bread, soft pretzels, tofu, tortellini, pears, etc. Get creative and dip away.

White Cheddar Beer Fondue

  • 1 cup of lager beer (I won’t tell if you go cheap. They use PBR at Melting Pot in La Jolla!)
  • 2 cups of white cheddar (or sharp cheddar), shredded
  • 1/2 cup swiss or gruyere, shredded
  • 1 Tbsp. all-purpose flour
  • 1 tsp. spicy brown mustard
  • 2 dashes Tabasco (or your favorite hot sauce)
  • 3 dashes Worcestershire sauce

Melt it Down

  1. Toss the cheese with the flour to fully coat.
  2. Pour the beer into a small, deep pot and warm over medium heat until bubbly.
  3. Handful by handful, drop in the cheese and stir with a wooden spoon until completely melted.
  4. Turn the heat to low.
  5. Once all the cheese has been incorporated, add the mustard, hot sauce and Worcestershire. Stir to completely mix in.
  6. Transfer the cheese to a fondue pot (or just keep it in the pot and put it on a hot plate) and dip away!
Ready for dipping

Fondue is super easy. Promise. And it’s also easy to mess around with the cheeses and combos. You can try using a white wine with a swiss and gruyere mixture for a classic fondue. Skip the white cheddar and go for the orange stuff. Make things spicy by adding some pepper jack.

P.S. I tried to take a macro shot of the cheesy goodness on some bread, but my point and shoot doesn’t work so well in low light, as evidenced by this here photo:

Anyone willing to buy me a new camera for Christmas??

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