This is the real deal. It’s macaroni nestled down into cheese fondue, and baked until it’s bubbly and browned. Yes with Gruyere, and Emmentaler, and yup, the kirsch is in there, too. No milk, just wine. A little garlic, a dusting of nutmeg….just like I told you, the real deal.
I’ve eaten authentic Swiss fondue, and I’ve also watched it being made. It’s a very simple process, really, and probably easier than most people’s regular macaroni and cheese recipes. If you’re looking for a romantic dinner for two, or a fun and easy dish for a small gathering of friends, this is it.
If you’ve ever had authentic Swiss fondue, you’ll recognize the blend of cheeses. Gruyere is nutty and slightly sharper than the Emmentaler. The flavor of the white wine is prominent, and you’ll taste the Kirsch, a delicious colorless cherry brandy. Gruyere and Emmentaler tend to be expensive cheeses; buy small blocks. You can find mini bottles of Kirsch at large liquor stores.
- 2 cups elbow pasta
- 10-11 oz grated cheese (use a mix of Gruyere and Emmentaler)
- 3 tsp cornstarch
- 1 cup white wine
- 3 Tbs Kirsch
- salt and fresh cracked pepper to taste
- freshly grated nutmeg
- Set oven to 325F
- Cook the pasta to just shy of al dente, so it is still firm. Drain and set aside. Toss it with a tiny bit of olive oil so it doesn't clump.
- In a bowl, toss the grated cheeses with the cornstarch and set it by the stove. The cornstarch is important because it helps the wine and cheese blend into a smooth emulsion
- In a saucepan, heat the wine to a simmer, and then slowly add the cheese, a handful at a time, stirring or whisking continuously to incorporate it before going on to the next handful. The mixture should be hot but not boiling, and it only takes a short time...don't walk away.
- When the cheese is fully incorporated, add the Kirsch and salt and pepper to taste. Then grate in some fresh nutmeg.
- Add the macaroni to the fondue, and turn everything into a baking dish. Bake for about 30 minutes until bubbling, and then finish under the broiler to brown. Serve right away.
This fondue won't keep well, so plan to eat it all when you make it.(That shouldn't be difficult) And use a decent, drinkable wine since it is a big part of the flavor of this meal.