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en route to tapingHere I am on my way to this month’s appearance on WMUR’s Cook’s Corner. The car smelled of glorious melted cheese.

This episode needed to be simpler than previous shows. I was without Jane and I had one hand in a cast. [Hi Jane! Both Erin and I missed you!]

Fondue in an edible bowl. Brilliance. This recipe is so simple and so gratifying. I’ve made it for my colleagues twice in the last week. You can mix and match your cheeses to result in different flavors. Add some bacon for smoky goodness. Imagine how great these would look on your dinner table.

Acorn squash fondueThe squash from the Salem NH Farmers Market last week were petite. Rather than cutting them in half crosswise (as outlined below), I sliced the top to give a deeper bowl. You want to make sure that you reach the hollow section of the squash for easy seed scooping. Depending on the size of your squash, you can bake them in ramekins, cocottes (as shown above), etc. Or, you can bake them on baking sheets. To keep the acorn squash bowls from tipping and spilling the melted cheese, slice a thin layer off the bottom of the squash.

I also made roasted acorn squash and Brussels sprouts two ways.

What you need:

  • 2 lg acorn squash, cut in half crosswise, seeds removed
  • 2 tbs butter
  • 1 med sweet onion, chopped (or 1 leek, white and light green parts only, thinly sliced)
  • 1 c cream
  • 2 c grated Gruyere (or other good grilling cheese, like Fontina), divided
  • 1/4 c quark cheese, mascarpone or cream cheese
  • 1/4 tsp nutmeg
  • Freshly ground sea salt and black pepper
  • Slices of French bread, apples and pears for dipping

What you do:

  • Heat oven to 400°F.
  • Prepare roasting dish(es) with spray or baking sheet with parchment paper.
  • If using a baking sheet, small piece off bottom of squash so it lays flat.
  • Season the flesh-side of squash with salt and pepper.
  • Melt butter in lg sautépan over med-high heat.
  • Add onions and cook until tender (4-5 min).
  • Remove from heat and set aside.
  • In med bowl, stir together cream, 1 c Gruyere, quark.
  • Add nutmeg and season with salt and pepper.
  • Mix in onions.
  • Ladle the cheese mixture into the squash halves, leaving space at the top.
  • Sprinkle with remaining Gruyere.
  • Cover with foil and bake for 1 hour or until tender (larger squash will take longer).
  • Remove foil and broil to reach a golden brown, about 2 min.
  • Toast bread.
  • Serve fondue with bread, apple and pear slices.
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