Jenny, Christophe, and Martin, sitting down to a meal of raclette, in Martin’s Geneva flat.
Raclette is delicious — think of delicious cheese, melted and poured over various processed meats, such as salami, prosciutto, etc., and potatoes. Doesn’t really get much more basic, comforting, and delicious than that.
Other traditional Swiss meals are fondue (melted cheese and bread), rösti (melted cheese and hashbrowns), and alpenmacaroni (Swiss mac n’ cheese). We sampled them all, and found them all to be quite tasty. Even though I’m lactose intolerant, somehow my body figured out that all it was getting was cheese, and managed to adapt quite nicely.
A note on fondue — there’s the traditional cheese fondue, oil fondue, and much to my surprise, “chinoise fondue” aka hot pot, the dish that I grew up somewhat hating as a kid. Turns out that chinoise fondue is the upscale, expensive fondue, which confounds me, since it’s basically just boiling water that you dip thinly sliced meat and veggies into. Weird.
I don’t think I’d be out of line to claim that the Swiss are a stout and hearty people, exhibit A, any restaurant menu, and exhibit B, their waistlines (at least as compared to the French).