If you ever have a big, hearty, bicycling houseguest from Amsterdam; and they offer to bike down to Albisriederplatz on Sunday to buy fresh bread, say “yes”!
Bauer Bakery and Cafe is open on Sundays, and famous for their Champagner-Schwedentorte (a fondant-covered Champagne cake). I bought one for a party once and people still talk about it. I’ve also had perfectly cooked eggs for breakfast in the cafe, and the bakery counter is filled with breads, finger food (Mini Laugenbrötli, etc) and pastries.
We discovered Sunday morning that their full-grain breads are delicious too, and we fixed ourselves breakfast sandwiches of ham, avocado, and a fried egg. It’s preferable that the egg yolk is still liquid, and it’s okay if it drips when you’re among friends. You can then happily tear off another piece of bread to sop it up.
Our garden here is overgrown and weedy, but that’s what makes it such a treasure-trove. Right now we have red currants, raspberries, gooseberries, and wild strawberries ripening all over our yard.
Recently we picked about a quart of red currants off our one bush. I made a cake, some syrup, and froze the rest. I’ve also been picking raspberries almost every morning.
It’s great to have fresh-picked raspberries in our morning cereal. We make our own recipe of Müesli, that typical Swiss breakfast: we just mix together yogurt, dry Müesli cereal or granola, any handy fruit, and a splash of apple juice. I’m having lots of fun with this, and will let you know what I decide to do with the gooseberries.
Hooray! I’ve arrived in Switzerland. After over a month completely dedicated to preparing for it, sometimes working 14-hour days, I can hardly believe I’m really here. Most of my stuff has been sold, packed off into temporary storage, or tossed. My condo is painted, newly carpeted, and awaiting a tenant. And my head has stopped spinning (at least for now).
To celebrate Alan and I had a cheese fondue on Sunday night. Here’s a simplified version of how you make it:
First you need to pour yourself a glass of wine, then you grate the cheese. 200 grams (about 7 ounces) per person is the rule of thumb, and everyone has their favorite mix of cheeses. We had almost equal parts Appenzeller, Gruyere, and Emmenthaler.
Rub a heavy saucepan or heat-proof clay fondue pot with a clove of garlic. Add the cheese and a little over 1 deciliter (about 1/3 cup) of dry white wine per person. Cook over low heat, stirring constantly.
Dissolve 1 teaspoon cornstarch into one shot of Kirsch. Once the cheese is completely melted add the cornstarch-Kirsch mixture and keep stirring. Season with pepper and nutmeg. Set over an alcohol lamp and eat by stirring bread cubes speared onto fondue forks into the cheese.
It was delicious, especially since it was a chilly day and we had gone for a nice walk up the hill behind our apartment. Cheese fondue is heavy and rich, and the best time to eat it is after vigorous activity in the cold. But don’t worry if you visit in the summer; the Swiss are happy to sell it to you any time you want it.