One of the traditions our family has enjoyed through most of our marriage is the Christmas Eve fondue. It has become more of a production each year and with the recent availability in the past few years of electric fondue pots, we've been able to do some really fun things.
For those of you that have never "fondued," its a relatively simple process. The most common home fondue consists of filling fondue pots with some sort of oil and then you dip pieces of pre-cut raw chicken, shrimp, beef, pork, etc. into the oil and wait a few minutes for it to cook. Dipping sauces are available and it is a lot of fun. The fun is not in the "getting full," its in the whole experience. You can also have a cheese fondue in which you can dip various vegetables, crackers and other items.
If you want a real fondue treat, try eating sometime at The Melting Pot, a fondue restaurant that has become one of Jeni and my favorites. The meal there takes between 2-3 hours and it is a great experience. Jeni and I ate there just a few months ago with some good friends and so we were anxious to try some of their techniques at our own fondue. So, for the first year, we did not use oil and instead used a delicious broth recipe which included bay leaves, garlic, parsley, pepper, beef broth, red wine vinegar and french onion soup. Delicious! It was so much better than the oil - healthier and less messy.
During the evening we served about 40 people, mostly family, and it was a great time. Below are the pictures of the main fondue, the cheese fondue and vegetable table, a chocolate fountain that has become part of our tradition, and some pictures of the family. If you are in town next year and don't have plans Christmas Eve, come and join us!