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Old 04-09-2014, 07:58 AM   #1
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Default Raclette

Not sure how many of you are familiar with Raclette. It's a Swiss thing, right next to Fondue.

While you prepare a Foundue with a mixture of Swiss cheeses and other ingredients in a pot and then bring it to a very gentle boil so the gathered assembly can dunk their pieces of bread at the end of a Fondue fork to scoop up the delicious melted cheese, with Raclette cheese is melted right onto a hot plate.

In Switzerland, the traditional restaurants actually have full half-wheels of cheese near a fire so they can get the cheese to melt and flow right onto customers' plates. At home, many Swiss have Raclette machines, sort of small ovens you place on the table, and each person prepares their own Raclette melt. You can get those here, too. Of course, you can also simply stick the plate with cheese in the microwave.

Anyway, the secret with Raclette is that it must be actual, real Raclette cheese. And that's hard to come by. Trader Joe's usually has packages of it in the Winter season, October through January or so. Shipments are usually gone within hours or minutes.

So I was really surprised when a few days ago, in April, my local Trader Joe's got a new shipment of Raclette cheese. Bought a whole load of them.

Yum.
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Old 04-09-2014, 09:29 AM   #2
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In deed it is delicious, with dried thin sliced beef and potatoes, with a dry white wine
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Old 04-09-2014, 09:34 AM   #3
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Know it, love it. Thanks for the TJ's tip!
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Old 04-09-2014, 10:41 AM   #4
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It sounds delicious.
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Old 04-09-2014, 11:47 AM   #5
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We love it! Fortunately a few places around here carry raclette cheese all year around (both the real Swiss/French stuff and the Canadian imitation). We have found, when running out of raclette (we have a teenage boy, he can eat a lot of cheese.....) that havarti makes an adequate replacement at the end of the meal for just a bit more. (kind of like how they always say to serve the best wine first, while palates are fresh). Then again, we are barbarian canadians; someone who grew up with the real thing might notice the difference much more strongly than we do.
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Old 04-09-2014, 04:03 PM   #6
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I've bought it TJs. I'd never tried it before but now I'm a fan!
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Old 04-09-2014, 07:51 PM   #7
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A Raclette maker is on my list of things I need to get one day soon. One of my cousins likes it so well that he's changed their traditional Thanksgiving dinner into a Raclette party instead.
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Old 04-09-2014, 08:42 PM   #8
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Default Not really in the market for any appliances these days....

But it definitely sounds tempting. Although, maybe not enough to rush over to some of the more 'authentic' $wiss restaurants in my neck of the woods.

I wonder if that fondue-chain I'm now noticing everywhere would look into something like this in order to expand their menu a bit.

How's this for visual?
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Old 04-10-2014, 06:52 AM   #9
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Default

Yes, that YouTube visual is the real thing with real Swiss people.

Note that with Raclette you generally have small boiled potatoes, cornichons (available at TJ's), white wine, and special Raclette or Fondue spices.

Whatever other vegetables or thinly sliced meats you have with it are optional.


Quote:
Originally Posted by Yakatori View Post
But it definitely sounds tempting. Although, maybe not enough to rush over to some of the more 'authentic' $wiss restaurants in my neck of the woods.

I wonder if that fondue-chain I'm now noticing everywhere would look into something like this in order to expand their menu a bit.

How's this for visual?
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Old 04-10-2014, 09:27 AM   #10
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Being barbarian canadians, we've also played the 'what else is melted raclette cheese good on' game. Things that worked out so well that they are regular items for us (aside from the traditional small potatoes and sour gherkins).

- thin sliced prosciutto ham
- asparagus (extra good: lay a few stocks of asparagus crosswise in the middle of a slice of prosciutto, pour on the cheese, then wrap the prosciutto around the asparagus and cheese, and eat it as a package. So good!)
- our machine has a grilling surface on top, so we'll thin slice some chicken or steak and fry it on top (mostly for the teenage boy)
- pickled 'pearl' onions
- ummm, something else that I'm forgetting now, darn it!
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Old 04-10-2014, 10:19 AM   #11
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Conrad, my husband and I have a raclette and love it. We had a raclette party last year, and another friend with a raclette brought his over and we had them placed on the table, along with the cut up meat, cheese, potatoes, tomatoes, pickles and a variety of other things. It was a lot of fun. After, we ran the ice cream maker on the table, too, and shared in that. It's a very social, fun thing to do, and delicious!

There are also a number of fondue restaurants here, and those are delicious fun, too.
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Old 04-10-2014, 12:37 PM   #12
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Default ^That sounds like a double-rainbow of excitement...

Quote:
Originally Posted by Tad View Post
"Being barbarian canadians, we've also played the 'what else is melted raclette cheese good on' game..."
Well, from what I understand, this is why the fondue concept was initially promoted, as a means to drive a bigger market for locally produced cheese. I dunno if it was necessarily with global aspirations, but it's easy to see how...

I, myself, am not a guy that likes a whole lot of cheese. Except, maybe, if it's a few different types of really good ones. Or just a bit exotic (to my pallete). But, how many cheeses aren't just little bit better when either partly melted....toasted...etc? Or, if you're somehow trying to combine an assemblage of wines, cheeses, tapas, etc..; melting or warming at least one or two cheeses this way could very well add a whole dimension to something otherwise very ordinary looking.
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