Hosting gatherings on Friday nights after working a full day is always a challenge, even when it's a small group of friends.
Last night I hosted a book group in which I've been participating for about two years. It's a great group of women, an interesting combination of lawyers, social workers and educators. This month we were reading a book by an Alaskan author, My Name Is Not Easy, a young adult novel about Alaska Native students at one of the boarding schools that were once ubiquitous around the state when remote villages didn't have their own high schools.
The subject matter is fascinating and important--Alaska Native teenagers removed from their homes and transported hundreds of miles away to be educated to values that weren't necessarily their own--but the book is just so-so, mostly due to the bland writing.
I knew that I wanted to make a cake and set out some finger foods, but since we meet at seven I was going to make fondue.
Now, my love of fondue is well known. However, I wanted to do something a little different if I was going to serve up a big pot o' cheese again so soon. I modified the recipe I used previously to incorporate sassy, stinky Gorgonzola cheese. It gives the fondue a slightly funky flavor that is a nice counterpoint to the creaminess of the texture.
An all-blue fondue would just be too much--apparently it turns gray and unappetizing--but the proportions I used were just right. There's something wonderfully communal about sitting around talking about a book while everyone is dipping their forks into the same pot.
Serve with cubes of bread, baby carrots and grapes for dipping. Easily serves six people.
*I used an unoaked California chardonnay, which worked well. Avoid oaky Chardonnays, as they will clash with the blue cheese flavor.