Cook, Life in France
Comments 6

French 101: how to Raclette?

No matter how popular this ‘activity’ is in France. It was actually of Swiss origin. The just of raclette is… eat as much melted cheese as humanly possible. Welcome to my new series about how to integrate better in France! I hope this series will capture my journey as a new immigrant here in Paris.

 

According to my French hubby, the average French eats 200 gram per raclette session; that works out to be around 6-8 slices. After hosting a raclette party of our own, my reality was closer to 300 gram per person. Somehow, my friends finished 2kg cheese (6 people + myself, I’m useless and only had 3 slice and started to coma).raclette-french-101-9713Raclette is a beloved winter tradition here in France. If it is cold, it is the season for raclette! Have to love cheese a lot to do this, which most French does. Although raclette cheese is less pungent than blue cheese, it is still pretty smelly. Just imagine smelly cheese melted multiplied the number of people doing this at the same time.

 

Strange things that I did… always remember to laugh at myself 😛

  • When the French says sausages, it does not include the Frankfurt / hot dog varieties.
  • It is unnecessary to try and make the cheese slices look pretty. E.g. rolling them up into pretty shape will not enhance the guests’ experience.
  • Offering everyone cloth serviette for the lap *apparently, that was too formal for raclette

raclette-cheese-0918

Preparation

As a host, the following is required (basic raclette, nothing fancy):

  • Boil small potatoes (with or without skin) – estimate 300 gram per French adult
  • A bunch of cold cuts / charcuterie, another 300gram per person (it maybe just us, as we’re highly carnivorous)
  • Gherkins
  • Bell peppers (cut & raw)
  • Raclette cheese, 200-300g per person
  • Raclette machine

raclette-french-101-9705.JPG

Etiquette

  • Only use the spatula that came with the set to remove the cheese from the pan
  • After you remove the melted cheese from the mini pan, you replace it with another slice or slices of cheese
  • Why just ad once slice of cheese? Add 2 or 3 if your pan allows 😉
  • Make your raceltte fancy? Add bell peppers / mushrooms etc and then add cheese on the top
  • Stick to using your own pan
  • Some raclette machines can grill food on the top

 

Tip

  • Raclette WILL stunk up the WHOLE house. TONS of air freshener / scented candles is recommend.
  • Close off all clothing. Open the windows wide during if the weather permits.
  • Ditch the friend or anyone who is on a calories controlled diet. Raclette party guarantee minimum 1000 calories based on 200g cheese & 100g cold cut with potatoes. Do not invite them will do them a huge favour.
raclette-machine-fancy-9880

This was a fancy raclette machine. The top can cook or keep the boiled potatoes warm 😉 Photo was taken at my in-laws

raclette-machine-fancy-0940

Another example of a fancy raclette machine. My family was grilling some mushrooms and melting the cheese beneath.

Is Raclette popular in your town? Do you do this differently? Please share 😀

 

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Camera: Canon 5D mark 3

 

 

6 Comments

  1. Shih-Ya says

    I had my first raclette experience in Switzerland 2012. It was divine! So much so that all my team mates and I each bought ourselves a small 2 person raclette machine 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  2. I would honestly vomit from all that cheese. I’m sensitive to lactose! 😛
    But I do looooove cheese.
    Seems like every culture have their own version of grilling / cooking on tabletop. Cheese optional!

    Liked by 1 person

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