Who doesn’t love cheese? I know I do! If the only melted cheese you’ve tried is on pizza or a toastie, then there’s a lot more that you need to discover. Let me bring you to experience the incredibly satisfying world of molten cheese. When it comes to melting cheese, I’ve learned that not all cheeses are equal as some melt better than others, allowing unlocked textures, flavors and taste to ooze out. Cheese is considered to be one of the most versatile foods in the world. It can be eaten as it is, paired with a classy wine or even incorporated into any dishes from cold to hot, sweet to spicy, from appetizers to desserts. Most cheese recipes only need a few additional items added to the star ingredient to make them fantastic.
European Cheese Raclette
I was super excited to meet Chef Pierre Gay, a cheese connoisseur and artisan who came all the way from France, to learn more on the different varieties of European cheeses, and how best to enjoy them through a European Cheese Raclette party held at Cocott’ KL, TTDI. It was jointly organized by the French Interbranch Dairy Organization (CNIEL) and European Union, to promote the pre-eminence and finesse of European Cheese. European cheeses are ideal for Raclette as they have the right melting point giving it a creamy ooziness that is smooth and satisfying. Raclette is a fairly new concept in Malaysia but if you’re a cheese lover, this is an experience that you don’t wanna miss! Raclette fête is a tradition enjoyed in Europe for hundreds of years. Raclette is a cheese made of cow milk that has been broiled or melted under direct heat until cozy and a bit crispy. The bubbling fromage is usually scraped over boiled potatoes, crunchy vegetables or cured meats (cold cuts). Do you know that watching the cheese melt and being scraped over the food is part of the sensory experience of a Raclette? Raclette is now a global food trend. With all the rave in New York, Melbourne and food destinations in Europe, it is showing signs of becoming an enduring mainstay in leading restaurants. Chef Pierre Gay is the owner Pierre Gay Fromagerie, one of the oldest cheese houses in Annecy, eastern France. The fromagerie is known in the region for its fine cheeses since 1935. Pierre then took over the company in 1989 from his father. Pierre’s dedication and efforts paid off when he was crowned Meilleur Ouvrier de France (MOF) in year 2011, a recognition of being the top in his trade. According to Chef Pierre, “The secret to choosing the right cheese for a Raclette is the moisture content. The more moisture the cheese has, the better it melts. Generally European cheeses are more suited for Raclettes and the favorites are the signature Raclette Cheese, Emmental, Comte, and Camembert. Once melted, they will have a nuttier, sweeter flavour.” Pungent yet savoury, the Raclette’s pH level gives it the perfect melting point resulting in a molten liquid that is stringy and holds its shape at the same time. Super glad to have the chance to enjoy Brie, Reblochon, Fourme D’Ambelt, Comte, Saint Nectaire, Gouda and Scamorza over table top Raclette machines, enjoyed with various cooked and raw vegetable, meat, condiments and breads during European Cheese Raclette Party! With stringent quality control and regulations in Europe, European cheeses are always of the highest quality, and the best cheese products are readily available to the consumers in Malaysia. We can now recreate Raclette easily at home to enjoy with friends and family, giving the traditional cheese platter an enjoyable upgrade. Organize your own Raclette Party and get ready to melt into an epicurean journey with the world’s best European cheeses!