Wednesday, December 19, 2007


Fondues are definitely back in style. Whether its traditional, innovative, or simply retro, the fondue has made a welcome return to the dinner party scene.

The latest issue of Food and Wine Magazine even has a retro cheese fondue on its front cover for its New Year's eve dinner.

The fondue originated in Switzerland many centuries ago, and it is now, in fact, the country's national dish. This happened mainly because of the harsh winters in the Alpine mountains which meant that many villages were cut off for months at a time and food supplies were limited. The only readily available ingredients in many areas were cheese, wine, and bread. As the long winter continued, the cheese began to dry out, and the cheese fondue with the addition of wine and kirsch was born. The original Swiss fondue came from the region of Neuchatel and was made with Gruyere and Emmentaler cheese. Other villages soon adopted the dish and created their own versions, using local cheese and produce.

The recipe below is for the traditional Swiss Cheese Fondue.

Ingredients (serves 4)
Preparation Time: 10 minutes
Cooking Time: 10 to 12 minutes
  • 1 garlic clove
  • 2/3 cup dry white wine
  • Squeeze of lemon juice
  • 2 cups grated Gruyere cheese
  • 2 cups grated Emmentaler cheese
  • 1 tablespoons cornstarch
  • 2 tablespoons Kirsch
  • Pinch of salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon paprika
  • 1/4 teaspoon grated nutmeg
  1. Cut the garlic clove, then rub it around the inside of the fondue pot.
  2. Pour in the wine and lemon juice, and place over the lit burner.
  3. Gradually add the cheeses, stirring throughout until completely melted.
  4. When the cheese has melted and begins to bubble, blend the cornstarch with the kirsch and stir into the pot.
  5. If the fondue becomes too thick, add a little extra warmed wine; if it is too thin, add a little extra cornstarch, blended with a small amount of water.
  6. Cook, stirring, for 2 to 3 minutes.
  7. Add remaining ingredients to taste.
Serve with a green salad, or fruit such as pears, apples and grapes. Salami, mixed pickles and prosciutto also work well.

Sunday, December 16, 2007

Typhoon Gifts at Gourmet Fusion

Typhoon, one of our favorite suppliers, has produced some great gift ideas this year. All are made with the same superb quality and style that we have come to expect from Typhoon, but they are surprisingly affordable (and with 10% off this week, even better!).

Regular prices ranging from $9.99 for the Latte Mug and Frother or Chocolate Mug and Frother sets (great stocking stuffers), to $19.99 for all other gift sets.

For anyone who loves tea, coffee or chocolate, we have Tea for One Teapots in a striped gift box, mug and canister sets, Mad About Chocolate Sets and Complete Cappuccino sets.

If tea and coffee drinking is not your thing, why not check out the chocolate fondue gift sets?

This week the Gourmet Fusion store is offering all Typhoon gifts with 10% off, and there is still plenty of time for orders to be shipped and received in time Christmas.

If you simply love the range of Typhoon products and want to indulge yourself with something cool for the kitchen, how about something from the Italian Job Collection?

This Italian inspired range offers Italian styling with modern, practical lines, ideal for the modern kitchen.

Happy shopping!

Wednesday, December 12, 2007

Espresso Martini

Great as a cocktail by itself, or as an after dinner drink, the Espresso Martini is perfect for entertaining, and an ideal drink to include at parties and dinners for the holiday season.

Made with vodka, Kahlua and coffee, it is an elegant version of a cross between a Black Russian and an Irish Coffee, and is ultra simple to make. We like it using our Spanish Torrefacto coffee, as it adds an extra rich creamy coffee flavor to the drink, but regular coffee works just as well. Be sure to have plenty of coffee on hand, as one is never enough!

Espresso Martini Ingredients
  • 1 1/2 ounces vodka
  • 1 ounce Kahlua
  • 1 shot of freshly brewed, cream topped espresso
  1. Pour the ingredients into a shaker over ice and shake well.
  2. Serve in a Martini glass.
  3. Garnish with three roasted coffee beans.

Saturday, December 8, 2007

Deglingos on Sale!

As Christmas fast approaches, and the major stores are full of sales and special offers, Gourmet Fusion has decided to join in the fun, and for this weekend only all our Deglingos are on sale.

Originally $39.99, they are now available online and in our Leaping Lotus Solana Beach store with 20% off - so you can get that crazios, funnios character you have been waiting for for just $31.99!
They are suitable for all ages from babies to adults, except for Pikos the Hedgehog and Chickos the Hen, that have fabric spikes which may shed threads, and these could possibly be swallowed by babies.

Have some fun this holiday season and add a Deglingos to your Christmas stocking!

Thursday, December 6, 2007

Christmas Crackers

If, like me, you have ever celebrated Christmas in England, you will know that Christmas crackers are an essential part of the holiday festivities. So, in great British tradition, we have included some in both our online and Solana Beach store.

What exactly are Christmas crackers? Apparently, they date back to Victorian Britain when a confectioner started selling sugared almonds, each with a motto and wrapped in a twisted paper package, as love tokens.

One day a jet of resin from the confectioner's log fire burst into flame with a loud crack. He decided to use this idea and make a log shaped package that would produce a surprise bang and inside would be an almond and a motto (not unlike a fortune cookie). This soon became a favorite at parties, and gradually toys and hats were added to each "cracker". By the end of the century it was well established as a traditional holiday custom and now each year many households in the UK have at least one box of party crackers to pull at meal times, parties and family gatherings over the holiday season.

In recent years, they have become ice breakers at all types of parties, dinner parties, weddings and celebrations. Why not try a box at this year's holiday get together - you will be surprised at how the donning of a paper hat can transform the most quiet person in the office to the talkative person you didn't know existed.

A selection of Christmas and Holiday crackers can be found at the the Gourmet Fusion store, and are great for Christmas, New Year, and any other holiday celebration. The English themed ones are especially fun, and include novelty gifts of a London bus, red telephone box, taxi cab, and many other great British institutions.