Elevate Your Campfire Fondue With This Extra-Gooey Cheese

Although it's not the first dish that comes to mind when dreaming up camping trip provisions, fondue was made for campfires and outdoor hangouts. Whether it's made with decadent chocolate or savory broth, fondue is a communal meal that brings foodies together around a melted pot of dippable food. And as long as you can kindle a fire, you can keep the fondue going until it's gone. Of course, no fondue is as classic as cheese fondue, and although camping under the stars and sleeping with the bears is tiring, restaurant-worthy brie cheese fondue makes a primitive experience feel luxurious.

Brie is a versatile cheese that can be eaten at room temperature. But because it melts without clumping or developing a stringy texture, it's often served warm, making it a silky-smooth option for fondue. Brie flaunts a mild yet buttery flavor accented by earthy, nutty notes. When simmering over a crackling campfire, these notes develop a smoky, charred dimension, unlike any brie you've tasted before. Plus, brie pairs well with many other practical campfire bites, so your dipping options aren't limited.

Tips for perfecting campfire brie fondue

The most indulgent aspect of the fondue experience isn't just the cheese; it's also its laid-back convenience — simply fire up your heat source and get to dipping. However, keeping a few campfire fondue tips in mind will maximize your ease so you can focus on stargazing and face-stuffing.

Before you set out to camp, you'll want to pack the right fondue pot. Electric or candle-powered fondue pots are handy for home enjoyment, but when your heat source is a campfire, opt for heavy-bottom stainless steel pots or an enameled cast iron pot.

If you want to make fondue like the Swiss, purchase enough brie so each camper can enjoy 200 grams. Although brie rind is edible, it doesn't melt as the interior does, so you might consider removing it before you start the fondue. But don't throw the rind away — save it for a rainy day and bake your brie rind in the oven. If you don't want to go to the trouble of removing the rind, score it or cut into it with a knife to create pathways that expose the dippable cheese.

Temperature is everything — don't place the pot over a large flame; kindle a small fire that can maintain a low, slow simmer. Infuse the melted cheese with a dash of white wine to boost flavor, maintain a smooth texture, and prevent curdling.

Pairing campfire brie fondue

If you didn't already know, fondue is all about dipping (though we wouldn't blame you for spooning the pot and eating it like soup). Luckily, the same foods commonly skewered for fondue dipping indoors are practical enough to be dipped outdoors.

Soft, salty pretzels are satiating and satisfying, perfect for soaking up the buttery taste of brie while adding a pleasant hint of saltiness that can bring out the nuanced shades of flavor within the cheese. If pretzels aren't your thing, any soft, skewerable bread works. If your campsite comes with a grill, charred bratwursts, hot dog weiners, and meatballs, give the cheese a meaty, hearty machismo that helps your fondue feel more like a proper meal.

Surprising as it may sound, apples are great for brie fondue. Their sweet, tangy essence livens up the richness of the cheese. Dunk an apple slice into the ocean of cheese and enjoy it on a soft piece of gently toasted bread. Broccoli, cauliflower, and peppers are excellent for bringing a nutrient-dense earthiness into the cauldron of cheese. And don't forget to drown some roasted potatoes in your creamy brie fondue for a starchy and filling bite.

Brie fondue can also benefit from added herbs like rosemary, thyme, and sage or seasonings like garlic powder and black pepper. Whichever way you jazz it up and pair it, don't forget to brush up on your fondue etiquette, which may go up in flames after a few campfire beers.