I love meals that are cooked at the table and have the ability to be whatever the person eating wants it to be.
One of those is Fondue, which is either thinly slices of meat and veggies cooked in a hot pot of flavourful broth on the table and served with sauces, bread and whatever else you want, or pieces of bread dipped in melted cheese.
(Eating Chinese Fondue a few weeks ago)
The other is Raclette.
Not only are these meals easy to prepare, but they are meals that bring everyone together at the table for more than a few minutes.
This year for Simon’s 10y anniversary of working at his job, he got a raclette grill. It was on the gift list and we had been wanting one for a while so it worked out very well.
Traditionally, Raclette comes from Europe and is the name of a semi-firm salted cheese. The cheese is warmed next to a fire or by a machine and is then scraped onto the diners plate which has potatoes, cured meats, gherkins among other things.
The modern way of eating raclette is by using a raclette grill. The top part heats up letting you grill whatever you please… we like having marinated beef, potatoes, shrimp and bread on top of the grill (along with other veggies depending on our moods)
Under the grill you have little wedges called “coupelles” to melt cheese. You can either melt the cheese and then pour it over your other food (this is what the boys do) or you can gather the things you have grilled into the coupelle, top with cheese and then place under the grill to melt the cheese.
Though it is very easy to find Raclette cheese around here, it is also very expensive, so to make this an easy and pretty cheap meal, we use a sharp cheddar that has been thinly sliced.
Of course, because it is cooked at the table, the preparation for this meal is also really easy.
Though the grill we have now is OK, I would really like to get a better one with a stone top that heats up better and is easier to clean up after, but for now, we are happy to have this one and it will provide us with many meals to come…
This is a wonderful post– I love the photos and your personal touch! The cheddar cheese substitute is a grand idea… especially for yet-to-be refined tastes of kiddos.