Irish Cheddar Fondue with Kale Pesto

By Peggy Fallon
Tangy cheddar cheese only gets better when melted with Irish ale and swirled with a garlicky pesto. Open the bottle of ale at least an hour before starting the fondue, to let it go flat.


    • Asiago or Parmesan cheese
    • cayenne pepper
    • Cornstarch
    • For the fondue:
    • For the Kale Pesto:
    • fresh lemon juice
    • Fresh lemon zest
    • garlic clove
    • Hot red pepper flakes
    • Irish ale
    • Irish cheddar cheese
    • Kale leaves
    • kosher salt
    • olive oil
    • Powdered mustard
    • unsalted butter
    • walnuts
    • Worcestershire sauce


    1. To make the pesto: In a blender or food processor, combine the garlic and salt and process until the garlic is finely chopped. Add the kale, walnuts, cheese, lemon juice, lemon zest, and pepper flakes. Process, pulsing the machine on and off, until a coarse paste forms. With the machine running, pour in the olive oil. (Pesto can be made up to 2 days in advance and refrigerated.)
    2. To make the fondue: In a large bowl, toss the cheese with the cornstarch, mustard, and cayenne to coat.
    3. In a large heavy saucepan, melt the butter over medium-high heat. Add the ale and bring to a boil
    4. Pour the cheese mixture into a fondue pot. Drop tablespoons of the pesto over the top