Tuesday, January 30, 2007

Fondue Feasting

I don't think it was a desire to relive my youth or join the retro craze that inspired me to host a fondue party for my 44th birthday - it just seemed like a blast of an idea! It turned out to be a blast in reality. No not "that" kind of blast - thank goodness, though one could fear that with nine cans of denatured alcohol and sterno all burning at once - the kind of blast that means very fun!!

Nearly 20 friends gathered to help celebrate, all gathered around nine pots of simmering goodness, laughing and having a grand time. It was great fun!!

We feasted-
*two cheese fondues - one of them made of soy to pleast our vegan friends and dairy-allergy daughter - I gotta say though that soy cheese fondue is rather scary - tasty but a bizarre consistancy.
*two Mongolian pots - one vegetarian with tofu and veggies to cook in the boiling broth and the other meat based with marinated chicken and veggies to cook in the boiling chicken stock.
*two B-B-Q pots - one tofu and one meatball.
*three dessert fondues - a dark chocolate with cinnamon, a white chocolate and a respberry.

Guests brought the dippers and I got the fun part of preparing the fondues. It was fun to mix 1970's cuisine with the dietary needs of our times (vegans, dairy-allergies, wheat/gluten allergies and a desire for a bit more healthy, whole grain foods). Jani and our friend Marsha were marvelous su chefs at my beck and call to get all the pots lit (yes, that's right nine flames all going at the same time) and set pots out.

Now where would one gather NINE fondue pots you might ask. That's a story in itself. I posted an email to my extensive connections here in town soliciting pots and really scored. We had one of our own - one I"d acquired at an auction at Rainbow Family Camp last year from a gal who'd gotten it as a gift and never used it. A friend lent us her original 1970's pot in its lovely orange color complete with wooden lazy susan to set the pot and sterno upon. Other friends let us their pot - a commitment cermony gift they'd never used and barely recognized as their own at the party. The best part was getting a lead on six pots from another lesbian couple we don't know who used them at their commimtent ceremony to hold soup at each guest table. They'd bought 18 of them on QVC!! They would have happily lended more, but six seemed sufficient to me!! They heartily encouraged us to give away a few of their pots as "door prizes" as they really couldn't imagine what they might do with 18 fondue pots!!

And, the great thing - the sterno doesn't have the pungent odor I remember from the 1970's. Some used sterno and most of the posts used denatured alcohol which had no odor.

We now have a Melting Pot restaurant in town, but I think our fondue feast surpassed what we would have experienced there with gathering so many of us together all amazed at what we could do with nine fondue pots, cooperative efforts and good compnay.


Sonya said...

Happy Belated Birthday!

Your fondue party sounds like it was a lot of fun! We recently had a fondue party as part of a bachelorette party and it was great fun.

Liza Lee Miller said...

Happy belated birthday. Looks like an amazingly fun evening! So cool!

We recently had fondue at my school to celebrate the principal's birthday. Just two fondues going . . . cheese and chocolate. Heaven!