1 cup boiling water
2/3 ounce dried shiitake mushrooms
3 tablespoons butter
2 shallots, finely chopped
1 (500 gram) package Bonaparte cheese, chilled
2 tablespoons cornstarch
1 cup apple cider or light white wine
2 teaspoons garlic, minced
1 pinch white sugar (optional)
In a bowl, pour the boiling water over the dried mushrooms, cover and let sit for 30 minutes. Drain, reserving the soaking liquid. Chop the rehydrated mushrooms, return to the soaking liquid and set aside.
In a saucepan, melt the butter and sweat the shallots for 5 minutes. Add the chopped mushrooms and their liquid. Bring to a boil and reduce until the liquid is almost completely evaporated. Add the cider and bring to a boil.
In a bowl, toss the Bonaparte cheese with the corn starch. Add one third of the cheese to the saucepan and stir gently with a wooden spoon. Repeat with the remaining cheese, one-third at a time.
Heat the mixture to just below boiling. It should be nice and smooth but not too thick. Remove from heat and stir in the minced garlic. Add a little sugar, if desired, to neutralize any bitterness.
Serve in a fondue pot with the bread and vegetables for dipping.