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What to eat in Switzerland

If you are looking for the most popular Swiss dish, you might be surprised by the variety and diversity of the Swiss cuisine. Switzerland is a country with three main linguistic and cultural regions: German, French and Italian. Each region has its own culinary traditions and specialties, influenced by the neighboring countries and the local ingredients.

However, some dishes are widely enjoyed across the country, and have become symbols of the Swiss identity and culture. Here are some of the most popular Swiss dishes that you should try if you visit Switzerland or if you want to recreate them at home.

  • Swiss Fondue: This is probably the most famous Swiss dish, and for a good reason. It is a delicious and fun way to enjoy cheese with bread, potatoes, pickles and wine. Swiss fondue is made with melted cheese (usually a mix of Emmental and Gruyère), white wine, garlic and kirsch (a cherry brandy). The cheese mixture is kept warm in a special pot called a caquelon, and diners use long forks to dip pieces of bread or boiled potatoes into the cheese. Fondue is a social dish that is perfect for sharing with friends and family on a cold winter night.
  • Raclette: Another cheese-based dish that is very popular in Switzerland is raclette. Raclette is a type of cheese that is melted over a fire or a special grill, and then scraped off onto a plate. Raclette cheese has a nutty and slightly smoky flavor, and it is usually served with boiled potatoes, gherkins, pickled onions and dried meat. Raclette is also a communal dish that can be enjoyed at home or in restaurants, where each diner has their own small grill to melt their cheese.
  • Rösti: Rösti is a simple but satisfying dish made with grated potatoes that are fried in a pan until crispy and golden. Rösti originated in the German-speaking part of Switzerland, where it was a common breakfast for farmers. Today, rösti is eaten throughout the country as a side dish or a main course, often topped with cheese, bacon, eggs or vegetables. Rösti can also be flavored with herbs, onions or garlic for extra taste.
  • Zürcher Geschnetzeltes: This dish translates as “Zurich-style sliced meat”, and it consists of thin slices of veal cooked in a creamy mushroom sauce with white wine and cream. Zürcher Geschnetzeltes is a typical dish from the city of Zurich, but it can be found in many restaurants across Switzerland. It is usually served with rösti or noodles as a side dish.
  • Alplermagronen: Alplermagronen, or Alpine macaroni, is a hearty dish that was traditionally eaten by the Alpine herdsmen. It is made with macaroni pasta cooked with potatoes, cheese, cream and onions, and baked in the oven until bubbly and golden. Alplermagronen is often served with apple sauce or fried onions on top.

These are just some of the most popular Swiss dishes that you can try in Switzerland or at home. There are many more dishes to discover, such as birchermuesli, bündnerfleisch, papet vaudois, polenta or chocolate. Swiss cuisine is rich in flavors and traditions, and it reflects the diversity and history of this beautiful country.


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