Every once in a while, a food comes along that—no matter how over the top or cookware-specific—becomes ingrained in American cuisine and imagination. Fondue is just one of those foods. Originally from Switzerland, this dish of melted cheese is served in a ceramic pot, called a caquelon, over a burner, called a rechaud, with pieces of bread or vegetables speared on long forks for dipping. In the 1950s, fondue became popular as an American party food, both for its novelty and its communal nature. More recently, however, the dish has languished a bit—many have received fondue sets as wedding gifts, and many have relegated those gifts to the back of the closet. But when you’re getting a group of people together and looking to kick it old school, as it were, this retro dish is really a lot of fun. The best part: Fondue has come out of the closet, and is no longer limited to melted cheese and bread.
To get the fondue party started, here are five recipes:
Authentic Swiss Fondue by Victoria Blashford-Snell and Brigitte Hafner This is the classic fondue made with Gruyère and Emmental cheeses.
Tomato Fondue by Darina Allen and Rosemary Kearney Infinitely versatile, tomato fondue is a great alternative to the heavier cheese version.
Hot Crab Fondue Outre by Rick Rodgers Rich and creamy, this fondue is spiked with Old Bay for an unmistakable Chesapeake Bay flavor.
Filet Mignon and Shrimp Fondue by Lou Seibert Pappas This is a classic Christmas Eve dinner fondue.
Caramelized Pineapple with Hot Chocolate Sauce by Nigella Lawson Dessert fondue? You bet. This is sweet and chocolately, with a hint of rum.
Click here for more fondue recipes from Cookstr.com.