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8 Things That Go Just Right With Cheese Fondue!

8 Things That Go Just Right With Cheese Fondue!

I’m going to come right out and say it. I love cheese. I LOVE CHEESE! I also love beer, dipping (and double-dipping) foods, and cheese that is melted. You know where I’m going with this. All of these things together equal to the magnificent creation: cheese fondue! I am definitely a cheese maniac, though I am not from Wisconsin.

The word “fondue” is the feminine past passive participle of the French verb fondre which means “to melt.” It was said to be the national dish of Switzerland in the 1930s, and became popular in the US in the 1960s. AND NOW IT’S BACK. Fondue is amazing. I mean, you get hot melted cheese (or other melted things) and you get to use skewers, long fork, sporks, tongs, knives, or whatever you want to stick random foods into it.

The very first known fondue recipe comes from a 1699 book from Zurich, conveniently titled “Käss mit Wein zu kochen.” Fondue was promoted in the US at the 1964 World’s Fair in New York.

FONDUE_24

    Mmmmm.

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    These days, fondue is back in style, and you can buy whole fondue sets for $30 or less, and I want to bring fondue parties back! Of course, bread is the most common thing people think of dipping into cheese fondue, so let’s take a look at some other options, and things that go well with cheese-y fondue-y goodness!

    1. Beer, of course!

    Cheese fondue is usually made with beer and shredded cheese that melts and gets mixed together over continuous heat for melted drippy cheese-y fondue, so of course beer is going to pair well with it! Inside the fondue, an ale is delicious, such as Bass or Newcastle Brown Ale. You can also make cheese fondue with a mellow white wine! To drink with your fondue, light beers, white wine, and black tea are all said to go very well! Dark beers, such as Guinness, will overwhelm the flavor of the cheese.

    wine fondue

      2. Traditions!

      Traditions always go well with fondue. It is said that the reason fondue was so widespread in Switzerland is because it was convenient, all in one pot, combined with being over the fire, which the family would gather around to keep warm. It is tradition that if a man drops his bread in the fondue pot, he must buy everyone a round of drinks, and if a woman does, she must kiss her neighbors. Seems like a great drinking-and-cheese game to me!

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      flickr cheek

        3. Appetizer course: What to dip in your cheese fondue?

        Well, you have options! The most common is different breads. Personally, I could put cheese on anything, and other common fondue dippers include fruits like apples or pears, and veggies like raw broccoli, cauliflower, and carrots. Pretty much anything goes with cheese, so grab your favorite veggies and get to fondue-ing! These dippers, along with crusty bread, are the most common things that you’ll find served with fondue.

        fondue veg

          4. Lightly cooked or steamed vegetables

          Vegetables like asparagus or squash, or roasted artichoke hearts, fennel, and mushrooms are less common to find as cheese fondue dippers, but are extremely delicious in gooey, melted cheese. You can also steam the more regularly seen veggies like carrots and broccoli for a more cooked experience.

          mushroom

            5. Cured meats go surprisingly well with cheese fondue!

            Sausage, salumi, chorizo, prosciutto and more will be really yummy in fondue, and will create more of a “meal” feeling and less of the feeling of just an appetizer. Fully cooked meats like chicken or beef would also be great dipped in cheese, but you are more likely to find those as well as meats like shrimp and more in an entree type of fondue, known as fondue chinoise.

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            meat

              6. A surprising option for cheese fondue dipping: pickles!

              Small pickles such as cornichons are a great salty option for fondue.

              pickles

                7. Why don’t more people use potatoes for a fondue meal?

                Everyone loves baked potatoes with cheese on them, or cheese fries, so though it is pretty uncommon to be found on the plate for fondue, cooked potatoes, or french fries, or potato skins are a great option!

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                potato

                  8. Your friends!

                  What could possibly go with cheese fondue? The people you want to dip with, of course!

                  friends

                    Did I miss anything that you love in or with your fondue? Let me know, so I can try it!

                    Go forth and fondue!

                    Featured photo credit: Alexandre Duret-Lutz via flickr.com

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                    Last Updated on October 16, 2018

                    The Ultimate Guide to Help You Sleep Through the Night Tonight

                    The Ultimate Guide to Help You Sleep Through the Night Tonight

                    It’s well past midnight and you’ve got to get up in less than six hours. You toss and turn all night. Before you know it, another hour passes by and you start panicking.

                    If I don’t get to sleep in the next 30 minutes, I’m going to be exhausted tomorrow!”

                    One thing is for sure, you’re not alone. Over 70M+ Americans have stated that they don’t get the proper sleep they need at night.[1] So what could possibly be causing this insomnia epidemic?

                    Throughout my entrepreneurial journey of building my language learning company, I have experimented and researched dozens of best sleep practices. Some have flopped but a few have dramatically improved the quality of my life and work.

                    In this article, I’ll look into the reason why you’re sleep deprived and how to sleep through the night tonight.

                    Why you can’t sleep through the night

                    The first step to improving anything is getting to the bottom of the root problem. Different studies have shown the reasons why most people cannot sleep well at night.[2] Here are the main ones that the average person faces:

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                    Stress

                    If you’ve ever stayed up at night worrying about something, know that it’s a major sleep inhibitor. When you’re feeling stress, your mind and body becomes more activated, making it incredibly difficult to fall asleep. Even when you do manage to sleep, it won’t be deep enough to help you feel rested the next day.

                    Exposure to blue light before sleep time

                    We’re exposed to harmful blue light on a daily basis through the use of our digital screens. If you’ve never heard of blue light, it’s part of the visible light spectrum that suppresses melatonin, our sleep hormones. Other harmful effects include digital eye strains and macular cellular damage.

                    While daytime exposure to blue light is not very harmful, night time exposure tricks our brain into thinking it’s daytime. By keeping your brain alert and suppressing melatonin, your mind is unable to shut down and relax before bedtime.

                    Eating close to bedtime

                    Eating too late can actually be an issue for many people, especially those who are older than 40. The reason is, eating before laying down increases the chances of Gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD), in which stomach acid backflows into the esophagus.

                    Another reason not to eat too late is sleep quality. Even if you manage to sleep right after eating, it’s likely that you’ll wake up tired. Instead of letting your body rest during sleep, it has to digest the food that was entered before bedtime.

                    Rule of thumb: eat 3-4 hours before bedtime.

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                    Medical conditions

                    In some cases, it could be medical conditions that cause your sleep problems. If you can’t relate yourself to the above reasons or any of these common sleep problem causes, you should visit the doctor.

                    The vicious sleep cycle

                    The biggest danger to repeating the bad habits mentioned above is the negative cycle that it can take you through. A bad night’s sleep can affect not only your energy but your willpower and decision making skills.

                    Here’s an example of a bad sleep pattern:

                    You get a bad night’s sleep
                    –> You feel tired and stressful throughout the day.
                    –> You compensate it with unhealthy habits (for example junk food, skipping exercises, watching Netflix etc.)
                    –> You can’t sleep well (again) the next night.

                      You can imagine what could happen if this cycle repeats over a longer period of time.

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                      How to sleep better (throughout the night)

                      To help you break the vicious cycle and stop waking up in the middle of the night, I’ll explain to you a list of actionable steps to solve your trouble staying asleep.

                      1. Take control over the last 90 minutes of your night

                      What you do (or don’t do) before bedtime have significant impact on the quality of your sleep. Many times, it can be the difference between staying up until 4am and sleeping like a baby.

                      Here are a few suggestions:

                      • Go from light to dark – Darkness stimulates production of the sleep hormone melatonin. Turn off unused light around the house, and think about investing into warm light that you can use in the bedroom before bedtime.
                      • Avoid screens (or wear blue light blocking glasses) – Keep the bedroom a technology-free zone as the light from electronic devices can disturb your sleep. If you need to work, wear blue light blocking glasses (also known as computer glasses) throughout or before you sleep to prevent sleep disruption.
                      • Find an activity that helps you to wind down  This could be anything that calms you down, and reduces thinking (especially unnecessary stress). Fir example, listening to soothing/good feel music, taking a hot bath, reading or meditating.
                      • Keep any electronics you have on the other side of the room or outside the room – One of the most harmful things that can disrupt your sleep is the notifications you get from your smartphones. The simplest way to avoid this is to keep it away from you.
                      • Create a bedtime routine – A night routine is a couple of things you do prior to going to bed. By doing these things every night, you’ll have a more restful and high-quality sleep. Learn how to pick up a night routine here: The Ultimate Night Routine Guide to Sleep Better and Wake Up Productive

                      2. Eat the right nutrients (and avoid the wrong ones)

                      What you eat (not just when we eat) plays a critical role in your sleep quality. If you’re ever in doubt of what to eat to improve your sleep, take the following into consideration:

                      • Kiwi – This green fruit may be the ultimate pre-bed snack. When volunteers ate two kiwis an hour before hitting the hay, they slept almost a full extra hour. Kiwis are full of vitamins C and E, serotonin and folate—all of which may help you snooze.
                      • Soy foods – Foods made with soy such as tofu, miso and edamame, are rich in isoflavones. These compounds increase the production of serotonin, a brain chemical that influences the body’s sleep-wake cycle.
                      • Fiber-rich foods – Eating more fiber could be key for better sleep. Eating fiber was associated with more restorative slow-wave sleep—the more you eat, the better you sleep—per a study published in the Journal of Clinical Sleep Medicine. Fiber prevents blood sugar surges that may lower melatonin. Get a fiber boost from beans, artichokes, bran cereal and quinoa.
                      • Salmon – Most fish, especially salmon, halibut and tuna boost vitamin B6, which is needed to make melatonin— a sleep-inducing hormone triggered by darkness.

                      3. Adjust your sleep temperature

                      Once you’ve gone through the first 2 recommendations, the last step to experiment with is temperature. According to Sleep.org, the ideal temperature for sleep is 60-67 Farenheit. This may be cooler than what most people are used to, but keep in mind that our body temperature changes once we fall asleep.

                      Rule of thumb: sleeping in cooler temperature is better for sleep quality than warmer temperature.

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                      Find out how to maintain the optimal temperature to sleep better here: How to Sleep Faster with the Best Temperature

                      Sleep better form now on

                      Congrats on making it to the end of this guide on sleep. If you’re serious about taking the necessary steps in improving your sleep, remember to take it one step at a time.

                      I recommend trying just one of the steps mentioned such as taking a hot bath, blocking out blue light at night, or sleeping in cooler temperature. From there, see how it impacts your sleep quality and you can keep doing what works, and throw away what doesn’t.

                      As long as you follow these steps cautiously and diligently, I know you’ll see improved results in your sleep!

                      Featured photo credit: pixabay via pixabay.com

                      Reference

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