Peppered New England Thyme Fondue

By • February 12, 2011 • 25 Comments

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Author Notes: Revisiting my classic fondue recipe this week, I am adding aleppo pepper, shallots, and thyme to come up with a new recipe. I like the way the spices and herbs bracket the cheeses. I am combining a wonderful Grafton cheddar with a parmesan reggiano. This fondue offers a subtle tangy sweet and sour balance with a little kick from the pepper...maybe this is a desperate try to wake up New England during this waaay too long winter...really it is high time for a change. - SagegreenSagegreen

Food52 Review: Sagegreen has come up with a fabulous new twist on classic fondue with her Peppered New England thyme version. All the wonderful things about classic fondue remain intact, with the additional notes of thyme, shallots, aleppo pepper, cinnamon applesauce and maple syrup giving it a whole new (England) meaning. I tested it twice; once cleaving to the original recipe, and the second time around giving it a bit of Brooklyn by using an ale from a local microbrewery instead of the Sam Adams and a fine aged New York State cheddar in place of the Grafton. It was equally yummy!wssmom

Serves 4

  • splash of olive oil
  • 3 ounces finely minced shallots
  • 1 teaspoon finely chopped fresh thyme leaves
  • 1 ounce preferably homemade rustic applesauce (with cinnamon)
  • 1/2 tablespoon dijon mustard
  • 1 ounce cider vinegar
  • 1/2 tablespoon maple syrup
  • 1 teaspoon fresh Meyer lemon zest
  • 1 teaspoon aleppo pepper flakes, to taste
  • 4 ounces Sam Adams Boston ale
  • 6 ounces finely grated aged New England cheddar cheese, Grafton 3-4 year if possible
  • 2 ounces finely grated Parmigiano-Reggiano
  • 1/2 tablespoon arrowroot (or flour)
  • artisan bread cubes or crisp apple slices
  • additional aleppo pepper flakes
  1. Slowly cook the minced shallots in the olive oil in a heavy sauce pan or Dutch oven until caramelized. Stir in the thyme leaves, applesauce, mustard, cider vinegar, maple syrup, aleppo pepper and lemon zest. Using an immersion blender puree (or transfer to a blender to puree and return to the pot). Bring to a boil.
  2. Stir in the beer and continue to heat.
  3. Mix the arrowroot evenly in with the finely grated cheeses and add these slowly to the pot, stirring constantly until fully melted. Transfer to a fondue pot and keep warm while serving with artisan bread cubes or sliced crisp apples or whatever you like for dipping. You can offer additional aleppo pepper for those who can just never get enough.
Jump to Comments (25)

Tags: savory, tangy

Comments (25) Questions (0)

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over 3 years ago Table9

This looks so yummy Sagegreen!

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over 3 years ago Sagegreen

Thanks, Table9. I quickly glanced at your lovely entries, which look amazing.

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over 3 years ago Lizthechef

When I was a kid, my folks and I visited the Grafton cheese "factory". It was tiny then, but I remember how wonderful the cheese tasted. Another lovely recipe!

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over 3 years ago Sagegreen

So nice to hear from you Ltc! Thanks. What a lovely childhood memory. We only toured Pepperidge Farm when I was a kid, but Grafton may be a future field trip.

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over 3 years ago TasteFood

I love this - it sounds like an English Pub Ploughman's Lunch in a bowl. You had me with the Sam Adams.

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over 3 years ago Sagegreen

Thanks, TasteFood. What a clever analogy! I do think it is a great use of Sam Adams, too.

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over 3 years ago kmartinelli

This recipe is just crazy enough to work - I love the combination of unlikely ingredients. It really does sound delicious. And also somehow captures the essence of New England. Thank you for sharing! I look forward to making it!

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over 3 years ago Sagegreen

Thanks, km. Let me know what you think if you do make this!

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over 3 years ago Sundayinthekitchen

This sounds fantastic!! Not at all what I think of when I think fondue. Way to kick it up a notch, Sagegreen....

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over 3 years ago Sagegreen

Thanks, Sundayinthekitchen!

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over 3 years ago gingerroot

This sounds delicious with all of the flavors you have in here - bright with spice - perfect for bread, but I love your suggestion of dipping apple slices! YUM.

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over 3 years ago Sagegreen

As much as I love the elegance of the Swiss fondue, the comfort of the cheddar is pretty great....and with apples this is refreshing, too.

Stringio

over 3 years ago testkitchenette

I love your flavors! I make a cheese fondue with Belgian beer think the cheese and beer combination when all molten are awesome!

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over 3 years ago Sagegreen

Thanks, tk. Yes, I think there is something very down to earth about the cheese and ale combo. Hope you will post your recipe, too.

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over 3 years ago drbabs

Barbara is a trusted source on General Cooking.

So I think it would only take me about 4 hours to drive to your house....
Sounds really good! I love aleppo pepper too!

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over 3 years ago Sagegreen

Thanks, drbabs.We so have to meet up! I think I have some works that will be accepted for a Brooklyn show at the Williamsburg Art and History Building this April btw.

Mrs._larkin_370

over 3 years ago mrslarkin

Mrs. Larkin is a trusted source on Baking.

drbabs, I'll ride shotgun. ;) This sounds great, Sagegreen!

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over 3 years ago hardlikearmour

hardlikearmour is a trusted home cook.

I think sagegreen should bring the fondue out to the west coast, where the weather is not quite so frightful!

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over 3 years ago Sagegreen

I wonder how long it would take to ride shotgun out to Oregon! That would be such a fun road trip. Lol.

Mrs._larkin_370

over 3 years ago mrslarkin

Mrs. Larkin is a trusted source on Baking.

Could you imagine a bunch of foodies driving cross-country?? I think it would take us weeks, what with all the eating. And pit stops. ;)

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over 3 years ago Sagegreen

Yes, exactly! Imagine all the recipes we could make along the way!! Early retirement and a new book anyone?

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over 3 years ago hardlikearmour

hardlikearmour is a trusted home cook.

I drove from Madison, WI to Portland, OR when I moved out here. Took about 2.5 days (was 2000 miles) w/ minimal stopping along the way. Soooo, I figure from the east coast w/ a bunch of foodies would likely take at least 10 days.

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over 3 years ago drbabs

Barbara is a trusted source on General Cooking.

Isn't that what Jane and Michael Stern did when they wrote "Road Food?"

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over 3 years ago aargersi

Abbie is a trusted source on General Cooking.

Yum Sage this sounds REALLY good! I sure hope you guys get some relief from the cold soon, but until you do there is warm cheese to comfort you!

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over 3 years ago Sagegreen

Thanks, aargersi. We have a warming trend coming this week. Meanwhile I am so enjoying that aleppo pepper from Austin!!!