I am a scientist who loves to cook because there are many similarities between working in a lab and cooking in a kitchen. I love to share my cooking experience with you and to inspire others to cook.

Wednesday, October 26, 2011

Cheese Fondue/Queso

Although Cheese Fondue and Queso are two very different dishes, they are essential the same in my opinion --- melted cheese. I will be using the word queso in this post instead of cheese fondue because it has one less word :)

Cheese CAVE!!!!  


I can traced my experience with queso to 3 monumental moments :)  The first was a meal at a Tex-Mex restaurant outside of Houston, Texas. After a day of outlet mall shopping, we asked a store owner where to go, and I had my first queso. This was 5 years ago. That opened my eyes to the world of melted cheese.

My second experience was at a friend's football party. His wife made queso and I never left the side of the pot.

In between these years, I have made melted cheese by microwaving cheese (not a bad way), cooking cheese in a pot (i don't recommend this), or simply buy Queso dip from the store.

I had to use this picture!! so nerdy.

Taste pretty good. But only in the first 10 bites. 
The last monumental experience was a fondue dinner at the Melting Pot. It was at this dinner that I have decided that I need make this dish based on the technique I saw at Melting Pot. Why pay $15 for a pot of melted cheese???

Chopped vegies and apples, that looked like it were from Walmart, being served at the Melting Pot

Long and behold, I bought two cheeses from Trader's Joe, (come on Trader's Joe, time to sponsor my blog).

Next, by taking a page out of Melting Pot's technique, I built a "Steaming device".

Fill a small pot with water and put a large bowl over it

Then I cut up the cheese to small pieces. Lesson learned here --- the smaller the better. Grate it if you can.

The cheese should be smaller than this

Next, melt the cheese in the bowl

Cheese and cream. Please pardon the picture quality. I am still learning how to take better pictures.

Finally, add some cream to the melted cheese.

Keep cooking (steaming) until the cheese becomes smooth.

Very stringy melted cheese. Not the liquid flow-y consistency that I expected. Good nonetheless

A bit blurry. Trying to take a picture with one hand holding the camera

I didn't add any seasoning to this dish. Just cheese and cream. But one can definitely spice it up a little by adding chopped onion/chives/herbs/splash of wine. I know of places that add fried bacon to the queso.

I am surprised by how easy it is to make this cheese fondue/queso. I used two kinds of cheddar cheese. I will definitely try other kinds of cheese in the future. Just not blue cheese :)   I read somewhere that it is a good idea to mix hard and soft cheese.

hope you will try making your own fondue and let me know how it goes.

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