When you think fondue, probably the first things that come to mind are fruit and chocolate dipped in chocolate. (Yum.) But traditionally, this Swiss dish features meat and seafood dipped into sauce, oil, or broth. Here's the rundown on what meats work best for the ultimate fondue party.
Best in: broth or oil
To cook beef steak in broth fondue, trim the fat from the steak and cut the meat into ¼-inch-thick strips to allow for quick cooking. Each strip can be cut to any length, but less than two inches is best for bite-sized pieces. Cook the steak in broth at 212 degrees Fahrenheit for 20 seconds to 1 minute, depending on how well-done you like the meat.
To cook in oil fondue, trim the fat and cut the steak into 3/4-inch cubes. Cook each cube of beef in oil at 350 degrees Fahrenheit for 30 to 60 seconds, depending on how well-done you want it.
Serve plain or with steak sauce.
Best in: oil
Trim the fat from a pork tenderloin or cutlet, but leave a very thin layer of fat on the meat for extra flavor. Cut the meat into ¾-inch cubes and cook it in oil at 350 degrees Fahrenheit for 45 to 60 seconds. Serve plain or with dipping sauces such as a honey mustard or sweet and sour sauce.
Best in: oil or broth
To cook chicken in oil fondue, cut a breast into ½- to ¾-inch cubes. Dip the cubes in oil at 350 degrees Fahrenheit for 1 minute to ensure it cooks thoroughly. To eat, dip the chicken in any sauce that pairs well with wings, like buffalo sauce or ketchup.
For broth fondue, cut the chicken into ½-inch cubes or ¼-inch-thick slices. Dip the chicken in broth at 212 degrees Fahrenheit and let it cook for 2 minutes.
Serve chicken on its own or along with the broth.
Best in: oil or broth
Before deciding whether to cook seafood in oil or broth, keep in mind that cooking in oil may cover up the flavors of some fish.
For oil fondue, cut the fish fillet into ¾-inch cubes or ½-inch-thick strips. Dip the fish in oil at 350 degrees Fahrenheit for 1 minute. Serve with tartar sauce.
For broth fondue, cut the fish fillet into ¼-inch-thick strips. Dip the strip in broth at 212 degrees Fahrenheit for 1 to 2 minutes, depending on how well-done you like it. If cooking shrimp, let it cook until it's completely pink. Serve with the broth, with tartar sauce, or with cocktail sauce.