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Already a storied tradition in Switzerland, fondue famously burst onto the scene in the United States in the 1960s and ’70s, when modish fondue pots, with their slender, two-tined forks and miniature burners, became the quintessential American wedding gift. While that may define fondue in modern memory, the communal art of leaning over a warm pot of melted cheese and wine, dipping in bread, vegetables and fruit, grew from the peasant traditions of Neuchâtel, a French-speaking canton in western Switzerland.
Fondue, from the French word fondre (“to melt”), was first a means of feeding families a thrifty winter meal, melting scraps of beloved local cheeses like Gruyère and Emmenthal to make a dip for richly bathing hunks of bread.
In recent years, fondue has branched out and is making another quiet resurgence.
“There is a whole world of fondue that goes way beyond cheese,” writes Hallie Harron, a Costco member and author of the cookbookNot Your Mother’s Fondue (Harvard Common Press, 2010; not available at Costco). “There are five basic categories of fondue: cheese, sauce, oil, broth and dessert.” The influences on this social dish are global: Broth fondues are a nod to Mongolian hot pots, and chocolate fondue is thought to be an American invention.
For cheese fondues, cubes of bread, boiled potatoes and apple slices are common accom- paniments. All manner of modern sauces, from marinara and hummus to peanut sauce and warm crab dip, can be placed in the center of a table for communal dipping, for a sauce fondue. Bite-size pieces of raw meat and sh, and quick-cook vegetables like sliced carrots, celery and mushrooms, are ideal for broth or oil fondues. Cookies, fruit and cake complement chocolate-based dessert fondues.
While a stoneware or cast-iron caquelon(fondue dish) was originally used for fondue, “today we have heavy, wide, fairly shallow metal or earthenware pots in basically the same shape as the classic pot,” says Harron. Long-stemmed fondue forks are used to securely spear ingredients for dipping.
When going for a dip, keep in mind that losing the contents of your fork into the pot traditionally earns you a lighthearted penalty, such as buying a round of drinks or giving a kiss to one of your table mates. Depending on the fondue, be sure to keep it warm or hot by reheating it over the stove or arranging over
a portable burner.
“Four people is an ideal number to share a fondue pot at a small dining table,” Harron suggests.
by LIZ PEARSON
While presenting my marketing plan to a home seller, he stopped me to ask why I was spending so much time on my expertise at creating listings in the MLS. I guess I had been going on, but that’s because it’s possibly the most important part of marketing a home.
Studies show that a listing has to capture a buyer’s attention within seven seconds. Home buyers are sifting through hundreds of listings on the computer as they start their home search. A listing has to make the cut at a glance, and that means the photos first, then the words have to be perfect!
Too many MLS listings and photos are poorly crafted and fail to capture the buyer’s interest, meaning the opportunity with that buyer is lost forever. As a real estate consultant, I take the MLS listing very seriously, knowing it will be seen by hundreds of buyers on my website and
through partner sites, like Realtor.com and Zillow.com.
If you or any of your friends are going to be selling their home soon and want a smart
agent on their side, call or text me for an immediate consultation.
fro Becky’s Bulletin Nov. 2018
Click link below for my November 2018 newsletter. Happy Thanksgiving!
Why spend money at the corner chain coffee shop when you can make a tasty pumpkin spice latte at home? It’s just as good and best of all, you can go back for seconds!
1 cup freshly brewed coffee
4 tablespoons of pumpkin puree
1 cup 2% mild
1-2 tablespoons of sugar (to taste)
1 tablespoon pumpkin spice
Pumpkin spice mix:
2 tablespoons ground cinnamon
2 teaspoons ground ginger
1 teaspoon ground nutmeg
1 teaspoon allspice
1/2 teaspoon ground cloves
In a sauce spoon, add all ingredients. Bring to a slow simmer for 5 minutes. Pour into mug. Top with whipped cream. Garnish with pumpkin spice mix. Enjoy!
-Recipe shared from ENJOY October 2018 compliments of Rob Dennis VP of Mortgage Lending
Question: I sold my house. Is buying another house the only way I won’t have to pay so much in taxes?
-Inez R., Brooklyn, New York
Answer: There used to be a rule that you could avoid any tax if you rolled over your proceeds from a sale into a new home of equal or greater value. But that’s not how it works today.
There’s a good chance you may not owe any tax on your sale, based on cur- rent law. For starters, you are eligible for a big federal tax break when you sell your home. There is no tax at all if you sell your home and your profit—the capital gain—is less than $250,000. If you are married, the capital gains exclusion is $500,000. The one catch is that the home must have been your primary resi- dence (not a vacation home) and you must have lived in it for at least two of the past five years.
It’s important to understand that what you paid for the house is just the starting point for figuring out your profit. You can also add to it the cost of any work you did to the house that improved or extended the life of the house. This is called the adjusted cost basis. Subtract that amount from your sale price. If it’s below $250,000/$500,000, you do not owe any capital gains tax.
If your profit is above those limits, you owe capital gains tax—but only on the amount that is above $250,000/ $500,000. You can learn more about the tax rules when selling a home in IRS Publication 523 (irs.gov/pub/irs-pdf/ p523.pdf ).
Question: I would like to know at what age does my husband have to withdraw money from his 401(k). He is 67 years old.
-Magda E., Knoxville, Tennessee
Answer: Money invested in a traditional 401(k) is subject to required minimum distribu- tions (RMDs) imposed by the Internal Revenue Service. The general rule is that you must begin to take RMDs by April in the year following when you turn 70 1/2, and then take annual RMDs every sub- sequent year.
One exception is if your husband is still working for the company where he has his 401(k). He may be able to delay taking RMDs on a 401(k) from a current employer until April after the year he retires, but he will need to check with the plan. Any 401(k)s from old jobs are not exempt;thoseRMDsmuststartat701/2.
If you also have traditional IRAs, there is no way to delay RMDs past age 70 1/2.