Zuppa di Formaggio is exactly what it translates to: Cheese soup. According to my research, this is indeed a Piemonte recipe, an my guess? This recipe didn’t originate in the cities.
If you recall the area, it does seem to be appropriate. A hearty soup, full of carbs. Perfect for the upper altitude mountain locations.
The cheese itself is flavorful. The Fontina is earthy. The Gorgonzola provides a bit of a sharp kick, and the Parm provides a sweetness. As the fall comes is coming into view, this is a recipe worth remembering.
It does require two double boilers. If you don’t have two double boilers, you can place a glass bowl over a stock pot filled with boiling water (Ensuring that the glass bowl lip diameter is larger than the lip diameter of the stock pot, while the base diameter of the glass bowl is smaller than the lip diamter of the pot of boiling water).
- 2 tablespoons unsalted butter
- 3/4 cup flour
- 1 quart whole milk
- 1 cup freshly grated Parmigiano
- 2/3 pound Fontina Valdostana, diced
- 2 ounces Gorgonzola Dolce
- 2 1/2 tablespoons unsalted butter
- 3 egg yolks
- 1 cup beef broth
- Day-old bread, sliced & toasted
- Freshly ground pepper
In a large double boiler or large glass bowl, you’re going to make a very thin bechamel. Melt 2 Tablespoons of butter in the bowl or boiler placed over another pot containing a simmering boil. Add 1/4 cup of flour and mix into the butter well. Repeat the previous step until all the flour has been added and resembles sort of a mashed potato paste.
Pour 1/2 cup of milk into the flour and whisk in well. Repeat the previous step seven more times until all the milk has been added, whisking well, ensuring a velvety creamed soup. Add the grated Parmigiano and fold in well. Allow to melt. Make sure the soup remains hot as you turn towards the fondue mixture.
In another double boiler, combine the dices of Fontina and Gorgonzola. Stir until the cheese is melted (this could take between 7-15 minutes, so be prepared to wait, and be patient). Once melted and of uniform consistency, lightly beat the yolks and stir them into the mixture, followed by the 2 1/2 Tablespoonss of butter.
Pour fondue into the bechamel soup (still warming over the boiling water). Mix well, and make sure it also turns into a uniform consistency. Add the 1 cup of beef broth. Ladle into bowls and top with slices of dried bread (I used a melba toast varient which worked amazingly).