Raclette is a cheese. It is also a term for a type of dinner.
Eva was our foreign exchange student. Eva came to live with us for the 2007-08 school year. Her home was in Germany. We had the pleasure of visiting her family in 2009. They rolled out the red carpet for our family and we enjoyed learning more about Eva’s culture. As with many countries, food is a big part of the culture in Germany.
One evening Eva’s family treated us to a Raclette dinner. Raclette dinner uses a cooking appliance set on the table. You are the chef. All are given a small pan to fill with marinated meats and finely chopped herbs and vegetables. While your meal is cooking in front of you, salad and bread are enjoyed. As your little pan finishes cooking, you top it with sour cream/raclette cheese and chive sauce. You pour it over roasted smashed potatoes. What’s there not to love? Then you start the process all over again. I believe it has not caught on in America because it is slow and small. Slow in that it took all evening, and small because each serving was not a whopping meal. Think fondue.
Dan and I found a Raclette table grill at our Aldi’s grocery here in town. We have had many friends over for dinner using our grill. Everyone seems to enjoy the novelty of Raclette. Right before Covid arrived, we had each couple from our 2019 Ballroom dance class over for Raclette dinner. It took 3 different evenings to fit everyone in, but we got to know the couples in a more personal way. There is no better way to get to know someone than by sharing a delicious meal together. This should never be rushed.
I soon realized that this little grill is a great breakfast companion. I have always loved having girlfriends over for a garden coffee including breakfast. A Raclette breakfast makes for a wonderful time with friends. My guests and I sit outside under our covered patio. We take in the beauty of nature and the warmth of summer. Coffee from the percolator, eggs with fresh herbs, pancakes with fresh fruit, little sausages, and sweet girlfriends make for a perfect morning. I host over a dozen breakfast Raclettes each summer. A highlight for sure. Planning ahead is key. I invite and schedule early for all my summer Raclettes.
Our Raclette table grill has been a unique way of doing life with friends. One little pan at a time.