A pot of warm fondue makes a convivial cool-weather dish, especially when paired with a glass of crisp white wine. Here, the combination of piquant Emmentaler with stronger Gruyere yields a fondue that’s rich and flavorful.
6 cloves garlic
2 cups (16 fl. oz./500 ml.) dry white wine such as Sauvignon Blanc
1 3/4 lb. (875 g.) Gruyere cheese, shredded
3/4 lb. (375 g.) Emmentaler cheese, shredded
2 Tbs. kirsch
1 tsp. freshly grated nutmeg
1/2 tsp. freshly ground white pepper
1 1/2 day-old baguettes or equivalent amount of artisanal nut, herb or whole-grain bread, cut into 1/2-inch (12-mm.) cubes
If using a ceramic fondue pot, set the oven to 250 degrees F (120 degrees C) and put the fondue pot in the oven to warm. If using a metal fondue pot, skip this step. Fill the burner of the fondue pot with denatured alcohol.
Crush the garlic with a garlic press or grate with a grater and put into a large, heavy-bottomed saucepan or directly into the metal fondue pot. Add the wine and place the pan over high heat. As soon as bubbles form around the edges, after about 2 minutes, reduce the heat to medium-low and add the cheeses, a little at a time, stirring with a wooden spoon. Continue to cook, stirring constantly, until the cheese melts completely into a smooth, creamy mass. Stir in the kirsch, nutmeg and pepper.
To serve, light the burner of the fondue pot and place it on the table. Pour the hot fondue from the saucepan into the warmed ceramic pot, or transfer the metal fondue pot directly to the burner. Set out fondue forks and pass the bread cubes. Serves 4 to 6.