Tuesday, January 1, 2013

The 12 Posts of Christmas (2012), volume XII

So here we are - New Year's Day - January 1, 2013.  We dangled one foot over the fiscal cliff, slipped and grabbed a branch on the way down.  It appears that economic catastrophe has been avoided, for now.

Last night was, of course, New Years Eve.  The Brave Astronaut clan celebrated in traditional fashion, with the OSG clan having fondue to ring in the new year.  We wrapped up at their house and headed home and welcomed 2013 in our bed.  SoBA fell asleep on the way home and missed out on midnight.  Mrs. BA almost missed it - as she dozed up to midnight as well.  LBA made it to midnight and then went off to bed.  Long gone are the days when Mrs. BA and I would make it long enough to say we were up until a respectable time into the new year.

Today we will celebrate New Years with our other good friends - let's call them the MTJs.  Currently we are watching the Tournament of Roses parade, but surely there should be a viewing of the Poseidon Adventure at some point today.

Here's a basic cheese fondue recipe if you wish to celebrate like the Brave Astronaut clan.

  • 1/2 pound imported Swiss cheese, shredded 
  • 1/2 pound Gruyere cheese, shredded 
  • 2 tablespoons cornstarch 
  • 1 garlic clove, peeled 
  • 1 cup dry white wine 
  • 1 tablespoon lemon juice 
  • 1 tablespoon cherry brandy, such as kirsch 
  • 1/2 teaspoon dry mustard 
  • Pinch nutmeg 
  • Assorted dippers 
In a small bowl, coat the cheeses with cornstarch and set aside. Rub the inside of the ceramic fondue pot with the garlic, then discard.

Over medium heat, add the wine and lemon juice and bring to a gentle simmer. Gradually stir the cheese into the simmering liquid. Melting the cheese gradually encourages a smooth fondue. Once smooth, stir in cherry brandy, mustard and nutmeg.

Arrange an assortment of bite-sized dipping foods on a lazy Susan around fondue pot. Serve with chunks of French and pumpernickel breads. Some other suggestions are Granny Smith apples and blanched vegetables such as broccoli, cauliflower, carrots and asparagus. Spear with fondue forks or wooden skewers, dip, swirl and enjoy!

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