Monday, 21 January 2013


Last November I was invited to Zurich for the launch of my Fat book in German Fett. The trip from Paris on the TGV was pleasant on a high tech Swiss train that signalled where we were and how fast the train was travelling. We had good insider information about where to eat and drink, which was very helpful as Zurich is a lot pricier than Paris. And my husband and I spent a wonderful weekend in Switzerland, without once eating raclette, fondu, or chocolate.

As the weather was sunny and mild we decided to have a quick lunch at Vorderer Sternen standing room only with tables outside. We tried a bratwurst and cervelat sausage with bürli (a Swiss bread roll) which came with beer and mustard. The sausages were good but the bread was better.

One can't survive on bread and sausages alone, so after a boat trip on beautiful Lake Zurich we wandered into to the famous old-fashioned coffee house Sprüngli. A landmark in Zurich on the ritzy Bahnofstrasse, it was overflowing with cakes, cookies and chocolates for Christmas. Sprüngli is renowned for its Luxemburgerli, or mini macaroons, that of course the Swiss claim are better than the French version. I will state now that I have never been a big macaroon fan and I am sick of the continued fascination for them, so I chose crèmeschnitte, or mille feuille. My husband selected an Apel Chuechli (apple slice) and, as is often the case, his choice was better than mine.

The mille feuille was good and exactly what I expected, but his seemingly simply apple slice was a revelation. There was a cakey base and an almond topping as is common, but it was the apple filling that was unique. The apples were grated and it was if they'd barely been cooked. They had texture and taste of fresh apples.

Of course the main reason we were in Zurich was to attend the Fat Dinner at Neumarkt so there was serious eating yet to come.

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