Several years ago, our family resurrected a 70’s fad…The Fondue Party… and began a new family tradition.  I bought several fondue recipe books and began to experiment.

We had many a good night around the fondue pot in the North Carolina mountains.

During the final days of February pretending we were in the Swiss Alps or skiing in Colorado (and not at the beach)  we decided to throw a Friday Night Flicks Fondue Party.

 Cheese fondue with cheese with pesto, a classic cheese fondue and a crab cake fondue photo by Kathy Mille

I have a very nice Williams Sonoma Fondue Pot perfect for my cheese fondue… I wanted to serve several different fondue recipes and decided to scour the vintage stores to find a new/old fondue pot!

I had a blast and found this perfect vintage one at The Pickers Market in Fernandina Beach, FL.

Vintage Lazy Susan Fondue Pot with dipping pots photo by Kathy Miller

Normally this style pot would be great for Fondue Bourguignonne, traditionally using meat or chicken cooked in hot oil.  The small pots are perfect for different dipping sauces.

If you are wondering why I stuck a beautiful succulent plant in the fondue pot…I have a Wolfe induction cook top that will not heat without a certain stainless pot.  (Most fondues are best heated on the stove top first and then transferred to the fondue stand.)  I decided to use the dipping pots for a variety of vegetables and fruit.

I served a traditional cheese fondue and an appetizer version of crab cake fondue.

This red Cuisinart Fondue Pot heats well on my Induction cooktop.

Traditional cheese fondue photo by Kathy Miller

Succulent Plant in Vintage Lazy Susan Fondue pot photo by Kathy Miller

The word fondue is derived from the French fondre, meaning to melt.  It originated in the Swiss Alps using the few ingredients on hand during winter when fresh foods were not readily available.  Most cheese fondues are made with Swiss aged or hardened cheese, day old bread, white wine, and cornstarch.  The cheese should be melted slowly using a wooden spoon to stir with a figure 8 motion.

I’ve included recipes for my 2 favorite cheese fondues.


  • 1 garlic clove, halved
  • 1 1/2 cup dry white wine
  • 12 ounces Gruyere cheese, shredded
  • 8 ounces Emmentaler cheese, shredded
  • 4 teaspoons cornstarch
  • 1 teaspoon dry mustard powder
  • Crusty bread cubes for dipping


  1. Toss the shredded cheeses in a large bowl with the cornstarch and dry mustard.
  2. Rub the bottom and sides of fondue pot with cut side of garlic halves.
  3. Add the wine and heat to a strong simmer. Lower heat to medium.
  4. Add cheese one handful at a time, stirring constantly with a wooden spoon.
  5. Stir until each handful melts before adding another handful. The mixture will slowly thicken.
  6. When all the cheese has melted, place the fondue pot onto stand and light the fuel can.

By KathyMillerTime


Recipe Printed from www.kathymillertime.com

 I served with crusty bread cubes and a variety of vegetables for dipping…  broccoli, olives, pickled okra, carrots, mango slices, apple slices, red pepper slices, boiled shrimp…Use your imagination!

Another favorite cheese fondue has an Italian flair.  This one adds a pesto sauce!

Pesto Fondue

Serving Size: 6


  • 1 clove garlic, peeled and halved
  • 1 cup Italian white wine (Pinot Grigio)
  • 1 1/2 cups grated Fontina cheese
  • 1 1/2 cups grated Swiss or Emmentaler cheese
  • 1/2 cup grated Pecorino Romano cheese
  • 2-3 tablespoons all-purpose flour or cornstarch
  • 1/2 cup Pesto sauce

Basic Pesto

  • 2 cups fresh basil leaves
  • 4 cloves garlic, chopped
  • 1 cup walnut meats
  • 1 cup extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese
  • 1/4 cup freshly grated Romano cheese
  • Salt and pepper to taste


  1. Rub a fondue pot with garlic. Pour in the wine and heat over medium-low heat until hot.
  2. Toss the cheeses with the flour to coat. Add the cheese, a handful at a time, to the wine, stirring constantly and waiting until each handful melts before adding the next.
  3. Transfer to fondue pot stand, lighting the fuel can.
  4. Just before serving, swirl the pesto over the top of the fondue in a decorative pattern.
  5. Serve with bread cubes or vegetables...And dip away.

Basic Pesto

  1. Process the basil, garlic, and walnuts in a food processor fitted with a steel blade.
  2. With the machine running, pour in the oil in a thin, steady stream.
  3. Add the cheeses, a big pinch of salt, and freshly ground pepper. Process briefly to combine.
  4. Remove to a bowl until ready to use.


The freshly made Pesto is nice especially if using on a pasta dish, but if you are short on time, buy one already made in your local grocery store. The fondue does not require a large amount....Sometimes easy can be better.

By KathyMillerTime
Adapted from The Silver Palate Good Times Cookbook


Recipe Printed from www.kathymillertime.com

This crab cake fondue was also very good and had a little kick thanks to the jalapeno pepper and Old Bay seasoning.


  • 1 teaspoon vegetable oil
  • 1/2 cup chopped sweet onion
  • 1/4 cup choppped red bell pepper
  • 1 jalapeno pepper, seeded and finely chopped
  • 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt, divided
  • 1/4 cup dry white wine
  • 1 1/4 cups half and half
  • 8 ounces cream cheese, cut into 6 pieces
  • 8 ounces cheddar cheese, shredded
  • 8 ounces crab meat, picked through
  • 1 teaspoon Old Bay seasoning
  • 1/2 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
  • 1/2 teaspoon Dijon mustard
  • Crusty bread cubes for dipping


  1. Set the fondue pot over medium heat and add the oil. Once the oil is hot, add the chopped vegetables and 1/4 teaspoon of the salt.
  2. Cook until the vegetables have softened, about 5 minutes.
  3. Add the white wine and cook until it has evaporated. Stir in the half and half. When warm whisk in the cream cheese one piece at a time until melted.
  4. Add the cheddar cheese one handful at a time, whisking to combine.
  5. Once the cheese has melted, stir in the crab, Old Bay, remaining salt, Worcestershire and Dijon.
  6. Taste and adjust seasoning.
  7. Place the fondue pot on the stand. Light the fuel can and slowly adjust to the lowest flame.
  8. Serve hot

By KathyMillerTime


Recipe Printed from www.kathymillertime.com

 As mentioned in my previous Valentines Day post…we did have fondue…we did watch the famous Sabrina movie starring Audrey Hepburn, Humphrey Bogart, and William Holden…We did laugh at the soufflé scene.

Come celebrate with me!  I’ll save you a seat at the table…or in this case…around the fondue pot!


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