Today, it’s all about tasting the fresh farm foods that we ate during our Swiss weekend. It was pretty amazing.
Since we were in the region, our first stop was Gruyères village. A walled medieval city perched at the top of a steep hill, perfect to ward off those pesky invaders, Gruyères is absolutely gorgeous. The day we went, we arrived quite late in the afternoon and they had just finished with a military parade. Folks were dressed up in traditional Swiss-wear or in military uniforms.
It’s a popular destination, and definitely one of those places that you will hear all kinds of languages. Going late, the tourists were all leaving. We sat down and enjoyed one of the specialties of the town, raspberries with clotted cream. The cream is famously thick and decadent, owing its richness to the green grasses of the Alps where the cows summer.
It tasted phenomenal, but on top of that it was just gorgeous. Picture us sitting at a table on the balcony over-looking the town as the streets empty and the quietness settles in. Pure heaven.
There were plenty of great restaurants, museums, and a stunning castle. We wandered and wandered and enjoyed having the town almost to ourselves.
Of course, one of the main dishes that uses the famous Gruyère cheese that we’ve come to love so much is fondue! I was told the very best recipes were the ones that combined two cheeses, Gruyère with Emmental. I have yet to make this myself, but I have looked up recipes and it’s really simple. You melt the cheeses with little white wine and a dash of nutmeg. Dipping in those cubed stale bread, or better yet some boiled potatoes, is an activity that I would never get tired of.
Apparently the Swiss can never take the chance of being out of fondue ingredients, because at one dairy we drove by that was all closed up, we saw this vending machine that conveniently sells everything you need to make it, plus it carries the clotted cream and some meringues so that you just have to add a berry or fruit and it provides your dessert as well. So clever!
Not being able to eat fondue three meals per day, even if we wanted to, we tried another great dish…a croute. This delectable dish was a piece of toast, with ham, and egg, smothered in…yep! You guessed it. Gruyère cheese. Amazing!
Of course, it’s cheese, so you really don’t have to do much to it. Just eat it with a couple of gherkins, or on a piece of bread and onion sprouts. Delicious!
We loved our Swiss trip with all things related to cheese so much, that we plan to go back in a few weeks to see the cows come home! I’ve written about this before, and it’s fantastic to see how excited the town gets, and fascinating to see how they dress the cows up for the occasion. So even though this series is finished, we’ll be updating it soon with a new installment.
What do you think of Gruyère cheese? Would you devote an entire weekend to it?