Thursday, December 29, 2016


Three years ago we had Thanksgivukkah.  This year it's the other end of the lunar calendar arrangement.  I feel like I remember lighting a last candle into the new year once, so this may not be the latest Chanukah can possibly be.  But having the second night on a day when I usually make a fancy dinner anyway was helpful.

This year, I decided to follow Techie Smurf's tradition and do fondue.  I haven't hosted fondue in maybe ever, but we used to do it several times a year when I was growing up.

The only problem I came across while shopping for this meal was figuring out what to dip.  We used to do beef and shrimp, but one of my guests couldn't have seafood.  So I decided on beef and chicken, with some blanched pearl onions and baby bella mushrooms as what passed for a vegetable option.  We did have salad and latkes, so it wasn't all meat.  I got lazy and stressed for time and bought pre-sliced meat for stir-fry.  After all, I had just committed to peeling a bag of pearl onions.  The beef ended up fine, and the chicken was excellent.  For dipping sauces, I made Papa Smurf's special sauce and a horseradish cream, which is just horseradish beaten into unflavored whipped cream.

For dessert, there had to be chocolate fondue.  I got marshmallows, bananas, and made poundcake.  Taking a cue from a 1970 fondue cookbook, everyone got a little cup in which to spoon a personal portion of chocolate.  That cut down on drippage.

Growing up, the threat was always that if we didn't finish the fondue set-up we would have stew the next day.  It never happened, and I don't think we ever had stew anyway.   I just reheated the oil and kept having fondue dinners for the next two nights.  Plus, as just me, I was able to put in a lot of pieces at once instead of just the two sticks I gave each of us.

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