Gather ‘Round the Raclette Recipes

This week, gather around to share a rustic and homey meal by the way of the Swiss Alps: Traditional raclette cheese draped over farm-fresh favorites including German Butterball potatoes, smoky Italian speck and our housemade cornichons and pickled onions. Also included: Raspberry-streusel shortbread, a medley of produce like apples, red beets and leeks, plus your own mini raclette-maker to melt that ooey, gooey cheese right at the table.

Here are a few recipe ideas for the week:

How-To: Make Raclette
Let everyone assemble their own platter of provisions to top with melty raclette cheese!

Red Beet Salad with Cara Cara Orange Vinaigrette
This stunning salad is infused with bright, citrusy flavor.

Roasted Beets
This method creates tender, delicious beets that are easy to peel and serve in a salad.

Braised Fingerling Potatoes
Buttered and simmered in water, these rich, flavorful potatoes will wow.

Broccolini with Vin Cotto
Coated in a Balsamic vinegar glaze, garlic-flecked broccolini make for a warm, homey side dish.

Brown Sugar-Baked Apples
A true classic, this beautiful dessert is lovely topped with crème fraîche.

Brown Sugar-Baked Apples

A true classic, this beautiful dessert is lovely topped with crème fraîche.

Ingredients:
4 apples
½ cup brown sugar
4 tablespoons butter
2 teaspoons brown sugar
1 cup boiling water
Chopped walnuts or pecans, if desired

Method:
1. Preheat oven to 350°. Rinse and dry the apples. Using a sharp paring knife or apple corer, cut out the cores, leaving the bottom ½-inch of the apples intact. (If using a paring knife, first cut out the stem area and then use a small metal spoon to scoop out the seeds). Cut the holes so that they are an inch or so wide.

2. Place the apples in a baking dish and stuff each apple with 2 tablespoons brown sugar and 1 tablespoon butter, and a sprinkling of chopped nuts, if using. Sprinkle each apple with cinnamon.

3. Pour the boiling water into the bottom of the baking dish. Bake for 30 to 45 minutes, until the apples are cooked through and just tender, but not overcooked and mushy. When done, remove the apples from the oven and baste them with the juices from the pan. Serve with a dollop of lightly sweetened whipped cream or crème fraîche.

Broccolini with Vin Cotto

Coated in a balsamic vinegar glaze, this garlic-flecked broccoli makes for a lovely supper side.

Ingredients:
1 cup balsamic vinegar
1 cup sugar
1 pound broccolini, washed and trimmed
2 tablespoons olive oil
2 cloves garlic, peeled
¼ teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
Sea salt

Method:
1. Pour balsamic vinegar and sugar into a small saucepan set over medium heat. Let reduce by a half to a third, 25-30 minutes. Set aside.

2. Set a 6-quart pot of water to boil. When boiling, add the broccolini and blanch for about 2 minutes. Drain, rinse under cold water, and set aside.

3. Set a cast iron skillet over high heat. Add the olive oil, garlic and red pepper flakes and cook to season the oil for a minute or two. Add the blanched broccoli and sear, tossing carefully after a minute. After 3-4 minutes more, remove from heat. (The broccolini should be tender yet retain a definite crunch.)

4. Transfer the broccolini, garlic and pepper flakes to a serving platter and pour any remaining oil from the skillet over the veggies. Drizzle generously with the vin cotto glaze. Season with more salt and pepper as desired.

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Braised Fingerling Potatoes

Buttered and simmered in water, these rich, flavorful potatoes will wow.

Ingredients:
2 pounds fingerling potatoes
2 cups water
6 tablespoons unsalted butter
3 tablespoons chopped parsley
¾ teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon ground black pepper

Method:
1. Cut a round of parchment paper to fit just inside a 12-inch heavy skillet and butter one side.

2. Slice potatoes ⅛-inch thick with the slicing blade on a grater or with a mandoline. Arrange in layers in skillet. Add water, 1 teaspoon salt, and ½ teaspoon pepper. Dot top with the butter.

3. Cover potatoes with parchment, buttered side down, and briskly simmer until tender and most of liquid has evaporated, 30 to 35 minutes. Serve sprinkled with parsley.

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