Have a meltdown
Raclette is both a European cow’s milk cheese and a popular Swiss dish which typically consists of melted cheese scraped onto a heaping pile of boiled potatoes, pickled onions, and gherkins. Today, there are a variety of instruments used to re-create this fondue-like appetizer at home, none simpler than the Barbeclette ($12.39). Made by Boska Holland, in the Netherlands, the nonstick tray has a heatproof handle for use on outdoor grills. A campfire setting was once an essential component for raclette, dinner for Alpine cattle herders. But the tool has other uses. Melt mozzarella as a topping for vegetable skewers; combine provolone, tomatoes, and oregano in the pan for a variation of provoleta; stick by the traditional Swiss or appenzeller, melted and poured over cured meats and grilled potatoes; or top your favorite burger. Whatever way you slice it, there are few things greater than gooey, melted cheese. Available at Boston Cheese Cellar, 18 Birch St., Roslindale, 617-325-2500; Idylwilde Farms, 366 Central St., Acton, 978-263-5943.