07 November 2010

Don't mind if I fondue

As an American, my first thoughts at the word "fondue" are either "chocolate fountain" or "cheese". (I'll never forget the chocolate fondue fountain we had for Senior Prom at Hazen!) In case you live under a rock or stick to a boring diet of PB&J and macaroni, fondue is a communal dish of Swiss origin in which bits of food are speared and dipped into a sauce that's heated in a pot over a small burner. Most commonly, it's bits of bread dipped into a seasoned cheese and white wine sauce. The name, fondue is derived from the French word, fondre, which means "to melt"; so fondue means melted.

Tonight's fondue dinner introduced me to another way of having fondue - in oil. For Fondue Bourguignonne, the fondue pot his filled with hot oil and pieces of raw meat are dipped into it to be cooked. These chunks of meat are then served with a selection of sauces on the side. Add this to your list of foods to try, it's quite delicious! But, pay more attention to your beef than I did. A few times I got distracted by the lettuce on my plate and forgot to manage how long my meat cooked. Luckily, I didn't mind a few crispy chunks of meat! Mmm, mmm, and the bourguignonne sauce to go with was yummy! Alongside we had homemade fries (in northern France, they're everywhere) and a salad (meaning just lettuce). For dessert, we enjoyed a Tarte Vergeoise aux Pommes with vanilla ice cream. It was good enough to give apple pie a run for it's money! (Well maybe a warm, homemade apple pie takes the cake, but it was definitely delish!)
I forgot to take pictures tonight, but here you get the idea. 
Fun fondue facts:
  • My friends explained to me that in France, if you drop you food in the pot, then you have to be "tout nu dans l'escalier".  Are you willing to take the risk?
  • Apparently, it's a Swiss tradition that if a man drops a piece of bread in the fondue pot, he has to buy a bottle of wine. If a woman looses her bread in the pot, she has to kiss the man seated to her left. 
Before leaving to go to our friend's house for dinner, I was watching a show that was quite interesting called "À la recherche du nouveau Michael Jackson". Basically, they're looking for the next Michael Jackson - think American Idol but all MJ and add in all of his beloved dance moves. Loved it. Also, did you know that in France, it is very commonly thought that Michael Jackson is actually still alive? I would love it if that were true!

fondre - to melt
fondu(e) - melted
Bourguignon(ne) - from Burgundy
Une Tarte Vergeoise aux Pommes - a particular recipe of an apple tart 
tout nu dans l'escalier - naked in the staircase
À la recherche du nouveau Michael Jackson - In search of a new Michael Jackson

1 comment:

  1. I can't wait for you to recreate this meal when you are home. :)