Tag: Switzerland

Legendary Dishes | Mischleta (apple, cheese, corn and potato gratin)

SWITZERLAND
400 g potatoes, cooked whole, peeled, cut into 1 cm slices
250 g sweet apples, peeled, quartered and halved
200 g coarse corn
200 g Bergkäse / Swiss mountain cheese, grated or sliced
60 g butter
30 ml rapeseed oil / sunflower oil 
Black pepper, large pinch
Salt, large pinch
Oven dish, 25 cm in length

Sauté apples and potatoes in oil in batches in a frying pan over a medium heat, season and set aside to cool. Preheat oven to 200ºC. Grease baking dish liberally, add the corn, cheese, potatoes and apples in layers and finish with cheese. Bake for 40 minutes. Serve on warmed plates.


INDIGENOUS INGREDIENTS =  Apples | Corn | Mountain Cheese | Potatoes

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Legendary Dishes | Apfelsalat (apple salad)

AUSTRIA GERMANY LIECHTENSTEIN SWITZERLAND

Traditionally this salad utilised cored and peeled apples, quartered and sliced, dressed with sugar, for sweetness, and crushed walnuts, and served with cold cuts. None of that here. The vegan version is faithful to the old recipe, and adds a little lemon juice, for tartness, and hazelnuts to accompany the walnuts. The vegetarian version allows for a cream-milk sauce.

6 apples, cored, peeled, quartered and sliced
120 ml cream (optional)
120 ml milk (optional)
60 g hazelnuts, chopped small
1 lemon, juice and zest
45 g icing sugar
30 g walnuts, crushed

Combine apples with lemon juice and zest, and the sugar, stir and leave to rest for an hour in the refrigerator. Dress with nuts, and, if desired, whisk the cream into the milk. Serve sauce with the apple salad.


INDIGENOUS INGREDIENTS =  Apple | Hazelnut | Walnut

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Legendary Dishes | Pangasius Knusperli im Backteig (pangasius nuggets)

SWITZERLAND

400 g pangasius fillets, cut into 4 cm strips
125 g flour
100 ml white wine / beer
2 eggs, separated
30 ml canola / sunflower oil
5 g mustard powder
1 lemon, juice
Baking powder, pinch
Black pepper, pinch
Salt, pinch
Oil, for deep frying

Whisk wine or beer, oil and egg yolks into the flour, mustard powder and salt for a smooth batter. Beat egg whites until stiff and fold into batter. Heat oil to 190°C in a deep pan. Dredge pangasius pieces in the batter. Fry until golden, about three minutes. Dress with lemon juice. Serve with French fries.

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Legendary Dishes | Bündner Bohne und Gerstensuppe (Grabünden bean and barley soup)

SWITZERLAND

In the Swiss mountains the making of barley soup is considered an art-form. This is the version from the east of Switzerland, full of pork products – now cooked throughout the confederation.

2.4 litres water
4 smoked pork sausages, chopped small
250 g potatoes, chopped small
250 g bacon / ham, cubed
150 g cabbage, sliced
150 g carrots, cubed
1 leek, sliced
100 g barley, soaked overnight
100 g celeriac, chopped small
100 g onion, sliced
100 g white beans, soaked overnight
50 g butter
15 g sunflower oil
1 bay leaf
Chives, bunch, chopped
Pepper, large pinch
Salt, large pinch

Sweat cabbage, carrots, celeriac, leek and onions in butter and oil over a low heat, about 15 minutes. Add barley and beans, water, bay leaf and bacon or ham. Cook for three hours. Add potatoes and sausages after 150 minutes, cook for 30 minutes. Season, serve garnished with chives.

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Legendary Dishes | Fondue (aromatic cheeses, melted with wine, served with bread cubes) + Fondue Story

FRANCE | SWITZERLAND 

Cheese, garlic, kirsch, potato (or corn starch) and white wine are the essential ingredients of fondue. Emmental, Gruyère and Vacherin, the cheeses that form the base for a classic Swiss fondue, only tell part of its story.

Across from the railway station in Lausanne is a rising cobbled street. It leads to a busy road in the heart of the lakeside city. Located in an alleyway across from a nondescript church is the august establishment known as Café Romand. We looked around and wondered where we could sit. A sign above the kitchen celebrated the year 1951. Immediately we were transported into Switzerland’s past, when the country was still clinging to its culture, its traditions and its unique forms of language – Swiss-French along its western border with France, Swiss-German throughout almost two-thirds of its 26 cantons, Italian in the south and Romanche in the east. Yet here, on the rising shore of Lake Geneva, Café Romand epitomised this distinctiveness and uniqueness.

The Swiss are a courteous, generally friendly people with a strong sense of identity, an even stronger sense of belonging rooted in place, especially in the mountains. This is evident in the café.

A thin, gaunt woman dressed in a white apron and black dress, money belt hung loosely around her slight waist, asked us for patience. We waited. We were standing close to the kitchen, while waitresses darted in and out.

Meanwhile the waitress who had told us to be patient began dragging a smallish square table to an area between similar sized tables and several oblong tables joined together. She motioned for us to follow her.

In a flash she whipped out a white table cloth, produced cutlery from somewhere, chairs from somewhere else and told us to sit while she bought the menu cards. A badge on her waitress uniform told us she was Virginia.

We thanked her and ordered fondue. It was the reason we had come, ‘the best fondue in Lausanne is in the Café Romand,’ we were told.

It was. 

Then we heard an interesting story. The high mountains that divide France from Switzerland are believed to be the birthplace of this comforting winter dish and there is ample evidence to suggest that fondue is a product of the dairy farmers who have tended cattle for centuries on high meadows, in the areas of France and Switzerland once known as the Duchy of Savoy. It stretched across the Alps into Piedmont in Italy, and in the departments of Haute Savoy and Savoy in France and in the cantons of Vaud and the Valais the people shared the same food culture.

The western Swiss cantons of Fribourg, Jura, Neuchâtel and Vaud all specialise in fondue but Emmental, Gruyère and Vacherin – the classic cheeses that form the basis for a classic Swiss fondue – only tell part of the fondue story.

The Vacherin cheese of Fribourg is preferred by fondue aficionados because it adds full flavour to the mildness of the Emmental and the piquancy of the Gruyère – the combination for the classic Neuchâteloise.

Neuchâteloise, Moitié Moitié (half Gruyère, half Vacherin) and the fondue served in Salvan restaurants and along the valley canton are among the most popular with Swiss people. If you want to know which cheeses go into which fondues served high in the Alps you will have to ask. This is another clue to the origins of fondue.

More than likely you will be told a story about black and white cows, sonorous bells and hidden valleys. The semi-hard ‘delicious, fatty, sweet and soft’ cheeses of the Bagnes and Goms valleys are associated with the lively Hérens cows, as much a part of Swiss alpine scenery as the chalet and cable car, and the fondue of the region.

An older, more romantic fondue! Yet not that different from the fondue served in the valleys of Haute Savoy, across Lake Geneva, across the high peaks between the Valais canton.

High above Martigny in the valley canton of Switzerland, the picturesque town of Salvan is an alpine vision of perfection. Here, and all along the Trient valley towards Chamonix – the ski resort in the French Alps, the restaurants serve a special fondue made from mountain pasture cheese, in the tradition of their fore-bearers.

Of course the popularity of this amazing cheese dish may also have something to do with the tradition that demands punishment when a diner loses their bread in the fondue pot.

A man must buy a bottle of wine or a round of drinks.

A woman must kiss all the men in the company.

Fondue Savoyarde  (Savoy fondue – Beaufort, Emmentaler)

Made with milk from the abondance and tarine cows found grazing alpine flora. Beaufort is known as the prince of mountain cheeses in Haute Savoy and Savoy, and usually the principle ingredient in this distinctive fondue.

1 large farmhouse loaf, cut into cubes
400 g beaufort cheese, grated
400 g emmentaler cheese, grated
375 ml dry white wine
1 garlic clove, halved
Nutmeg, large pinch
Black pepper, large pinch
Fondue warmer

Rub the inside of the fondue pot (caquelon) with garlic. Add the cheeses white wine. Warm over a low heat, stirring thoroughly with a wooden spoon to obtain a smooth, blended mixture. Add pepper and grated nutmeg. Let the fondue cook for five more minutes, stirring constantly. Place the fondue pot over its warmer and enjoy the fondue by dipping the pieces of bread using long forks.

Fondue Rustique (origin fondue – Appenzeller, Emmental, Gruyère, Vacherin)

1 large farmhouse loaf, cut into cubes
300 ml white wine
200 g appenzeller cheese, grated
200 g gruyère cheese, grated
200 g smoked bacon, cubed
200 g vacherin fribourgeois cheese, grated
150 g ham, cut into thin strips
100 g emmentaler cheese, grated  
75 ml kirschwasser (sour cherry spirit – schnapps)
20 g potato starch
1 garlic clove, halved
Lemon juice, sash
1 sprig tarragon
Black pepper, pinch
Paprika, pinch 
Nutmeg, pinch
Fondue warmer

Sauté the bacon in a frying pan over a low heat. When the fat begins to separate add the ham strips and tarragon. Remove from heat. Rub fondue pot (caquelon) with the garlic clove. Add the cheeses, potato starch and wine, warm slowly. When the cheese starts to bubble on the surface, reduce heat, stir in the lemon juice and kirsch followed by the bacon and ham pieces. Season and leave the fondue to cook for five minutes over a low heat. Transfer the pot to its warmer and enjoy the fondue by dipping the pieces of bread using long forks.

Fondue Simpilär (Simplon – Gruyère, Raclette)

Less well known are the individual fondue of the mountain valleys. In their 2012 cookbook the farmer’s association of the Wallis canton offer a fondue made with local raclette and local wine.

400 g gruyère mature cheese, grated
400 g raclette full-fat cheese, grated
20 g cornstarch
20 ml Walliser white wine
1 garlic clove, halved
White bread, cubed

Rub caquelon with the garlic, add wine and reduce. Turn the heat low, stir in the cheese and allow to melt gradually. Make a paste with the cornstarch and a little wine. Add to the fondue and reduce. Serve with bread, keeping the fondue warm.

Fondue Neuchâtel (Emmental, Gruyère, Vacherin)

The classic fondue in Switzerland.

800 g mixture of emmental, gruyère, vacherin, grated
240 ml / 8 fl oz kirschwasser
35 ml / 1 fl oz white wine
20 g / ⅔ oz cornstarch
1 tsp lemon juice
1 garlic clove, halved
nutmeg, grated
White bread, cubed

Usual procedure. Add the lemon juice with the cornstarch and wine, then the kirschwasser, finishing with the nutmeg.

Fondue Apfel Walnuss (Gruyère and Vacherin with apple and walnuts)
400 g gruyère cheese, grated
400 g vacherin Fribourgeois cheese, grated
240 ml apple brandy
50 g walnuts, coarsely chopped, toasted
40 ml white wine
20 g cornstarch
2 apples, diced small
2 garlic cloves, halved
Nutmeg, grated
Cayenne pepper, pinch
White bread, cubed

Replace kirschwasser with apple brandy. Once cheese is melted add walnuts, then carefully stir in the apple pieces. Finish with the cayenne and nutmeg.

Älpler Fondue (Appenzeller, Emmental mature, Emmental mild, Sprinz with macaroni and bacon)
350 g emmental mature cheese, grated
350 ml white wine
240 ml kirschwasser
200 g bacon, cut into strips
150 g appenzeller extra cheese, grated
150 g emmental mild cheese, grated
150 g sprinz, grated
20 g  cornstarch
15 g butter
1 garlic clove, chopped small
Pepper, pinch
Salt, large pinch
Älplermagronen (amount of choice)

Stir cornstarch into kirschwasser. Fry bacon and garlic in butter in the fondue pot. Deglaze with wine, add cheese. Stir until cheese melts, add cornstarch mixture. Season. Serve with älplermagronen.

LEGENDARY DISHES


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Legendary Dishes | Bratwürst mit Zwiebelsauce und Rösti (sausages with onion sauce and grated potatoes)

GERMANY SWITZERLAND

Potatoes 1 kg
St Galler sausages / pork-veal sausages x 4 (640 g)
Onion sauce 500 g

Zwiebelsauce GERMANY SWITZERLAND onion sauce

There is no agreed method for making onion sauce in Europe. Some cooks insist it should be aromatic and saucy, rich and strong, and have a smooth consistency, other cooks believe it can be lumpy and gooey, thick or thin, flour-based or tomato-based.

Cream Version
350 ml bouillon
200 g onions, sliced into rings
100 g shallots, sliced
100 ml red / white wine
45 ml sour cream 
30 g butter
30 g white wheat flour
Black pepper, large pinch
Salt, large pinch
Sugar, large pinch
2 sprigs thyme
1 sprigs rosemary
Lemon thyme leaves, for garnish

Pour the hot water into a bowl, add the bouillon powder and leave to soak. Combine flour and onions in a large bowl. Heat butter in a large frying pan, add the flour and onion mixture, and cook gently for 10 minutes, stirring constantly. De-glaze the pan with the wine, add the bouillon and choice of herb, simmer for 15 minutes. Add cream, simmer for five minutes, season. Serve hot with grilled sausages and fried grated potatoes, garnished with lemon thyme.

Tomato Version
350 ml bouillon / broth
200 g onions, sliced into rings
120 g tomato passata / sauce
100 g shallots, sliced
100 ml red / white wine 
30 g butter
Black pepper, large pinch
Salt, large pinch
Sugar, large pinch
2 sprigs thyme
1 sprigs rosemary
Lemon thyme leaves, for garnish

Pour the hot water into a bowl, add the bouillon powder and leave to soak. Heat butter in a large frying pan, add onions, sauté for five minutes until the onions start to brown. Reduce heat, cover and cook for 10 minutes. De-glaze the pan with the wine, add the broth and choice of herb, simmer for 15 minutes. Add tomato sauce, simmer for 15 minutes, season. Serve hot with grilled sausages and fried grated potatoes, garnished with lemon thyme.

St. Galler Bratwürst SWITZERLAND pork-veal milk sausages

The butchers‘ guild of St. Gallen in 1438 noted that the country bratwürst was made with veal, belly pork, spices and fresh milk, and had a distinctive white colour. Today the St. Galler bratwürst is a white unsmoked sausage made with veal, pork, spices and milk. Why change a good thing? This unique sausage is produced in the cantons of Appenzell, St. Gallen and Thurgau with meat and milk from Switzerland and Liechtenstein. Throughout its history it has been made with and without veal, an unthinkable thought today to those who cherish a bratwürst that is now an integral aspect of Swiss festival culture. The year 2013 was the 70th anniversary of the St. Galler bratwürst at the Olma agricultural fair. More than half a million bratwürst went on the grill. Many were eaten on their own, some with the brown rolls called bürli and not a spoonful of mustard in sight. They are difficult to make in the home because the technique requires equipment that will produce a fine emulsion of the meat, milk and spices. But not impossible. St Galler sausages are sold in Switzerland in 160 g x 2 packets.

370 g veal, minced
260 g bacon, minced
150 ml milk 
100 g pork, minced
25 g pork belly rind, chopped
1 celery stalk, chopped
1 onion, chopped
15 g salt
1 tsp coriander, ground
1 tsp ginger, ground
1 tsp lemon zest
1 tsp nutmeg, ground
1 tsp white pepper, ground
Mace, large pinch
Pork casings
Ice, crushed

Blend the celery, onions and rinds in milk until smooth, add minced meat and blend again. Adjust liquid content with some ice, add seasonings and blend again. This should produce a thick smooth paste. Pack into casings, 25mm long, and place in a large pot of boiling water. Cook for 30 minutes. The desired internal temperature of the bratwürst should be 72°C. Prepare a pot of ice cold water. Plunge bratwürst into water to cool down. Hang until dry. The St. Galler bratwürst should contain 37% veal, 26% bacon, 10% pork and 27% bulk, of which 25% must be milk, wet or dry. Mace and pepper are mandatory, but other spices can include a combination of cardamom, celery, coriander, ginger, leek, lemon, nutmeg and onion.

Zürcher Rösti SWITZERLAND Zurich pan-fried potatoes

Johann Jakob Strub brought the potato to Switzerland. A native of the canton Glarus, he was a lieutenant in the English army and according to legend returned home with a bag of seed potatoes from Ireland. Potatoes were cultivated in Glarus in 1697. They spread to the neighbouring cantons and by the middle of the 19th century prötlete herdöpfel, fried potatoes, replaced barley porridge as the preferred breakfast among farming families around the growing city of Zurich. The recipe travelled south-west into the Bernese countryside and over the mountains into the Roman canton of the Valais / Wallis, where it was called pommes de terre roties. It became the morning meal among the French-speaking farmers, who shortened the name to roties – rösti in Swiss-German. By the mid-20th century variations of the original recipe began to appear. The Roman west preferred boiled potatoes, the Germanic east used raw.

1 kg urgenta potatoes, grated, squeezed, dried
4 onions, sliced
30 g oil
15 g caraway seeds, soaked
Salt, large pinch

Mix onions and potatoes, and sauté in a frying pan over a medium heat for ten minutes. Place a plate on top of the frying pan, invert onto the plate. Oil pan and slide rösti back. Cook for 20 minutes.

The rösti story is told in Culinary Adventures on the Glacier Express.

Varieties and uses of European potatoes are discussed in the Fricot Edition pocket book Cooked, Cured and Curdled: The modern story of traditional food in Europe.

INDIGENOUS INGREDIENTS = St Galler Sausages

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Small Breads | Aprikosen-Brötli (milk bread rolls with apricots made with spelt)

SWITZERLAND

Apricots are synonomous with the Swiss valleys, so it is no surprise that they make their way into milk bread rolls. These apricot bread rolls are also made with a combination of semi-white flour and cornmeal. This version celebrates the Swiss love affair with spelt.

500 g white spelt flour
250 ml whole milk, warmed
100 g dried apricots, soaked in 150 ml mineral water for two hours, 
chopped small, re-soaked, liquid retained
60 g butter
50 ml apricot water 
30 g sugar
25 g yeast
5 g salt
Wheat flour for dusting

Dissolve yeast in milk and sugar. Sieve flour into a large bowl, add salt, work in the butter. Add yeast mixtureknead into a smooth dough. Leave to rise for 50 minutes, degas. Add apricots and sifficient water to make into a spongy dough. Rise again for an hour, degas. Divide dough into equal pieces, around 85 g each, shape into rolls, place on a baking tray lined with greaseproof paper, leave to rise again, for 45 minutes. After 30 minutes dust the tops of the rolls, and make three cuts across each roll. Preheat oven to 200ºC. Bake for 25 minutes.


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