Every Friday, we select a question from our Facebook fans and answer it in this weekly column. This week, we talk about fondue, the Swiss national dish.
Facebook fan Sharmin Assam Foodie: Can one cook cheese fondue without wine?
The short answer is ... yes. Even though fondue is classically made with white wine, it can also be made with other alcohols like brandy, beer or whiskey or, for a non-alcohol version, with flavorful stock. But there are a few things to keep in mind if you're making a fondue without alcohol.
Wine, in the case of the classic recipe, adds flavor and keeps the cheese from becoming stringy because the wine is so acidic. Alcohol also maintains a lower boiling point, which helps the cheese from curdling. So when you don't use alcohol in making fondue, it's a good idea to add some lemon juice or a touch of vinegar. Traditionally fondue is made with hard or semi-hard, high-fat cheeses like Gruyère, Fontina, Raclette or Emmental. This is because these cheeses can withstand higher temperatures. Not to mention they're also the most flavorful. We don't recommend the use of processed cheeses, which can break into an oily mess at high temperatures.
Here's a recipe for Cheddar fondue, which is made without wine. We hope this helps you make the perfect fondue.
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