John and I found ourselves in Seattle on Valentine’s Day a few years ago and thought we would try The Melting Pot for dinner. If you have ever been to the Melting Pot you would immediately recognize our mistake. Valentine’s Day is booked months in advance. They allowed us to have an appetizer in the bar, which was very nice of them considering how full it was and considering that everyone else was sipping champagne while we ordered Diet Pepsi. They seated us near the fireplace and it was a lovely evening. The restaurant was beautiful and the service was marvelous. The servers treated us like their best customers even though they made almost nothing on us that evening. I was very impressed. If you get a chance to go there, I highly recommend it.
This year I decided to make up my own Melting Pot dinner so I picked up a nice little fondue pot for $7 at a second hand store. According to the website the “Romance Package” at the Melting Pot is $199. My version costs around $25 including the second hand fondue pot.
Here is the “Romance Package” description from the Melting Pot website:
“A secluded table in Lover’s Lane.” No problem, our dining room is always secluded.
“Surprise your sweetheart with roses waiting at your table.” I am skipping the roses, John wouldn’t even notice them.
“Toast to true love with champagne.” aka Diet Pepsi
“Relax and indulge in fondue courses at a leisurely pace.” I don’t think John could handle an entire meal of fondue. My plan is a cheese fondue appetizer, steak for dinner, and follow up with a chocolate fondue dessert. I will fill you in on dessert next week.
“Bask in the intimate atmosphere.” I can’t say that the atmosphere will be particularly intimate, but we will be basking in something.
“Discover how a fondue fork can give Cupid’s arrow a run for its money.” We will probably end up using our fondue forks for sword fighting over the last tortellini. It happens every time we have fondue…or long forks.
“Gaze longingly into each other’s eyes over a steaming pot of cheese fondue.” Okay, I might have a fit of giggling over that one. The cheese fondue recipe is below.
“Learn the recipe for true romance as you cook your entrees together in a fondue pot of love.” I’m trying to figure out how my $7 fondue pot could be a “fondue pot of love.”
“Feed each other chocolate fondue-covered strawberries.” That will lead to more sword fighting, I’m sure if it.
“Ignite the flame of romance as you watch your server flambé your chocolate fondue tableside.” We will skip that one too, John doesn’t trust me with fire.
Cheese Fondue Pot of Love
1/2 pound Maasdammer, grated
1/2 pound Sweet Red Pepper Gouda, grated
2 tablespoons corn starch
1 cup chicken broth (or substitute dry white wine)
1 tablespoon lemon juice
1/2 teaspoon dry mustard
1/8 teaspoon nutmeg, freshly grated
Place the cheeses in a small bowl and toss with cornstarch, set aside.
In a medium pan over medium heat, bring the broth and lemon juice to a gentle simmer. Add the cheese to the broth a little at a time, allowing it to melt between each addition. Once completely melted, add the mustard and nutmeg.
Transfer to a fondue pot and serve with dippers. Some of our favorites are toasted baguette slices, fried kielbasa slices, fresh tortellini (cooked according to the package directions), broccoli, mushrooms, etc.