It's 9 p.m. on a Wednesday and I'm home. I don't remember the last time that happened, and I especially don't remember the last time I watched television on, you know, an actual television.
It strikes me that unhealthy (but tasty) food is the only accompaniment for bad television. This fall, David received a fondue pot for his birthday, in memory of the terrific fondues we had in Switzerland this past spring. It's surprisingly hard to find a good fondue recipe, because it's such a retro food. Fortunately, one of my favorite food writers--Mark Bittman--had an easy one in his How to Cook Everything Vegetarian. Bittman, who writes for the New York Times, is a terrific, no-nonsense arbiter of what people really want to eat. This recipe is no exception.
Classic Cheese Fondue
Adapted from How to Cook Everything Vegetarian by Mark Bittman
2 cups dry Pinot Grigio
2 cloves garlic, crushed
1 tbsp. cornstarch
2 cups Emmenthaler cheese, shredded
2 cups Gruyere cheese, shredded
Fresh-ground black pepper
Accompaniments: cubed crusty bread, cubes of medium-rare steak, baby carrots
Start with the fondue pot on the stove (if yours is stove-safe), combining the wine and the garlic over medium heat and bring to a simmer. Combine the cornstarch with a tablespoon of cold water and stir thoroughly, until the cornstarch is incorporated.
Reduce the heat and add the cheese, stirring constantly over low heat. Keep the mixture at a simmer--do not boil--and cook for approximately ten minutes.
Serve with desired accompaniments. Sure, it isn't vegetarian anymore if you serve chunks of steak, but it sure is delicious.
Serves 4 as a main course; 6 as an appetizer.