I enjoyed my first raclette party, not in Switzerland, but in the Swissmar event this week at The Podium.
Celebrity Chef Jackie Ang-Po dished out her recipes – plates of hot melted cheese with black truffle shavings, sausage slices, smoked meats, breads, Asian and Mediterranean grills, with chocolate fondue for finishers.
Raclette was derived from the French “racler” – to scrape and it’s the name of a traditional soft, creamy, Swiss cheese.
Alpine herders driving their cows to mountain pastures warm their cheese on their campfires at night and scrape it off the rocks to spread on their bread. That’s how it all started.
Now, raclette could be a hearty meal in itself – comfort food at its best, or a grill party where both hosts and guests create their own dishes.
Melted raclette cheese can come with marble potatoes, gherkins, pickled onions, prosciuttos and other smoked meats, mushrooms grilled over an electric grill with a stone slab as a hot plate and small individual pans underneath.
Although this may seem very Western, the raclette can even be adopted for local dishes, such as “quesong puti” (white carabao’s milk cheese) and “pan de sal”. Imagination is the limit.
This is especially now that Swissmar, a Swiss-Canadian firm, has brought its gourmet houseware line – raclette grills, fondue pots and kitchen tools – to the country, in partnership with Gourdo’s.
The Swissmar Raclette Party Grill is heated by an electrical element which both cooks the food on the top grill and melts cheese on the trays below.
“It eliminates a lot of preparation stress for the party host and creates an interactive activity where everyone participates in creating personalized dishes,” says Marc Hoffman, Swissmar International Sales Manager.
The top hot plate is made of a stone slab which could be pre-heated for 20 minutes in the oven if you are in a hurry. It’s ideal for grilling meats, sausages, seafood and vegetables.
Chef Jackie advised users to cut the sausages, meats, potatoes, mushrooms and other into bite-sized pieces for easier cooking before putting them in. Don’t overfill the raclette trays or pile ingredients too high to distribute heat evenly.
To prevent the food from sticking, lightly oil the stone slab and sprinkle the surface with a little salt
Melt the cheese in individual raclette pans under the grill top. You can also use these little pans for heating bread slices.
Whip up a simple green salad for starters while the raclette is heating up and finish with a chocolate fondue, like we did.
RACLETTE for 4 persons
400 grams Raclette cheese
optional Black truffle shavings
120 grams Cornichons
120 grams Petite onions
200 grams Marble potatoes with lemon and thyme salt
200 grams Jamon serrano
4 pcs Italian sausage (contemporary raclette)
Raclette alone served best with an Un-Oaked
Young Chardonnay Served with the condiments choose the following wine:
- Chenin Blanc
- Sauvignon Blanc
ASIAN GRILL for 4 persons
For the non stick grill
320 grams Thin beef slices
soy sauce to taste
200 grams Asparagus
200 grams Karakuchi (Spicy dipping sauce for beef)
Amakuchi (Mild dipping sauce for beef)
- Drizzle a small amount of soysauce on the beef.
- Drizzle a small amount of butter/oil on the grill .
- Add a little garlic and the beef. Cook until desired doneness.
- Cook the asparagus in the same grill, sprinkle with salt.
- Serve with dipping sauces.
For the stone grill
for 4 persons
320 grams Gindara
60 ml Teriyaki marinade
10 ml Ginger juice
4 pc Scallop
Salt and pepper
4 pcs Lemon wedges
Ponzu (dipping sauce for scallop)
- Marinade the fish with the teriyaki marinade and the ginger juice.
- Season the scallop with a little salt and pepper.
- Drizzle a little oil on the stone grill and grill the fish and scallops.
- Serve with ponzu sauce and lemon wedges.
for 4 persons
8 pcs New Zealand mussels
30 ml (2 tbsp.) Light cream
10 grams Hondashi
120 grams Japanese mayonnaise
15 ml (1 tbsp.) Lemon juice
2 tsp Sriracha (or chili garlic sauce)
30 grams (2 tbsp.) Tobiko ( fish roe )
- Dissolve the hondashi in the light cream.
- Fold in the mayonnaise, lemon juice, sriracha and half the tobiko.
- Spoon over the mussels.
- Place 2 pcs in each raclette dish and grill until golden in color.
- Top with tobiko and green onion.
500 grams Prawns
500 grams Beef rib eye
4 cloves Garlic, minced
2 tsp Paprika
1/2 tsp Turmeric
1 tsp Cumin
1 tsp Rock salt
1/2 tsp Pepper
1/3 cup Red wine vinegar
1/2 cup Olive oil
1 pc White onion (medium size , cubed)
1 pc White onion (medium size , cubed)
1 pc red pepper
1 pc yellow pepper
12 pcs cherry tomatoes
- Mix together the paprika, garlic, turmeric, cumin, salt.
- Pepper and red wine vinger, add the olive oil.
- Divide the mixture into two .
- Marinade the beef and prawns separately. Chill overnight.
- Next day, skewer the beef with the onions and cherry tomatoes.
- Skewer the shrimp with the peppers.
- Grill the beef using the stone grill.
- Grill the prawns using the non stick grill.
- Place pita bread in the raclette plate and heat the bread.
- Serve with tzatsiki and hummus
3 tbsp. olive oil
1 tbsp. vinegar
2 cloves garlic, minced finely
1/2 tsp. salt
1/4 tsp. white pepper
1 cup yogurt, strained
1 cup sour cream
2 cucumbers, peeled, seeded and diced
1 tsp. chopped fresh dill
1 16 oz can of chickpeas or garbanzo beans1 tbsp. vinegar
1/4 cup liquid from can of chickpeas
3-5 tablespoons lemon juice (depending on taste)
1 1/2 tablespoons tahini
1/2 cup -3/4 cup roasted red peppers
2 cloves garlic, crushed
1/2 teaspoon salt
2 tablespoons olive oil
300 grams Malagos dark chocolate couverture
8 pcs Marhsmallows
1 pc Apple, sliced into wedges
8 pcs Strawberries
8 pcs Butter cake
2 pc Banana, sliced
(Swissmar products are available at Gourdo’s The Fort, Glorietta 4, Trinoma, Gateway, Promenade Greenhills, Robinson’s Magnolia, Robinson’s Manila, Shangri-La Plaza, Greenbelt 5, Alabang Town Center and the soon-to-open branch in Megamall. Swissmar is also at Living Well branches in The Podium, Mall of Asia, and SM Aura.)