Acclaimed chefs Elizabeth Falkner and Dan Richer joined forces for an epic evening, proving that pizza plus Emmi
Swiss cheeses is a match made in heaven.
When you think of pizza, Swiss cheese probably isn’t the first topping that comes to mind. But legendary chef Elizabeth Falkner is showing Americans just how delicious and versatile pizzas made with Gruyère and Emmentaler can be in the first-ever Emmi Swiss Cheese Pizza Tour.
Chef Falkner partnered with Emmi to bring unique pizzas to diner ds at pop-up events at some of her favorite pizzerias around the country. The tour kicked off this winter at the iconic Razza Pizzeria Artigianale in New Jersey, where chef and owner Dan Richer collaborated with Chef Falkner in crafting the traditional pizzas on the menu, as well as three innovative pies featuring Emmi Swiss cheeses.
“I’m super excited about our Emmi pop-up pizza tour,” said Chef Falkner. “I love explaining to people and other chefs that I’ve been making pizza for a long time, and I love all the Italian cheeses, but why aren’t we using some of these Swiss cheeses on pizza? It makes perfect sense, and they all have different qualities.”
She was thrilled to launch the tour with Chef Richer at Razza, a pizzeria she has dined at many times herself. Chef Richer makes his dough with American wheat that’s naturally fermented with a sourdough culture, resulting in an intense, deep flavor once it’s cooked in the woodburning oven. He explained that the texture of his pizza is completely different from that of Neapolitan pizza, which is typically eaten with a fork and knife.
“Personally, I love crispy pizza that you can pick up with your hands,” he added. “Our pizza is sturdier and crispier than what they look for in Naples.”
Chef Richer had never used Swiss cheeses on his pizzas before he became involved with the Emmi Pizza Tour, but he was intrigued to try them when Chef Falkner approached him about the collaboration. She selected Emmi Le Gruyère
AOP, Emmentaler AOP, and Kaltbach cave-aged Gruyère AOP (aged 1 year in a sandstone cave) for the pizzas created for the pop-up events.
“One of the things about pizza is that you need cheeses that melt nicely, and all cheeses perform differently, but across the board every one of these Swiss cheeses melted incredibly well,” said Chef Richer. “I’d even go so far to say these Swiss cheeses melted better than any Italian cheese I ever used. They just are at the right moisture content and fat content, and the way the cheese is produced enables them to really melt perfectly.”
Diners at Razza experienced this firsthand while enjoying the mouthwatering pizzas developed by Chef Falkner. The pies included a Swiss Onion Soup pizza with caramelized onions, thyme, and a blend of Le Gruyère AOP, Emmentaler AOP, and Kaltbach cave-aged Gruyère AOP, giving it a melty, cheesy umami bomb; the Alpine Marseilles, inspired by pizza from the south of France, with tomato sauce, fresh herbs, and those three Swiss cheeses; and the Finocchio 2.0, based on a pizza Chef Falkner created when she won a pizza competition in Naples, with braised fennel, fennel sausage, fennel pollen, and Le Gruyère AOP. Chef Falkner also added a special dessert of baked apple confit with Kaltbach Gruyère AOP, streusel, and cultured cream.
The tour continues at pizzerias in different cities including Nashville, Minneapolis and Los Angeles in 2020, and Chef Falkner looks forward to continuing to share her Swiss cheese pizza creations with diners and chefs alike.
For more information about the Emmi Swiss Cheese Pizza Tour, visit: emmiusa.com
Emmi Le Gruyère AOP Tells a Deeper Story
To tell the story about the heart and heritage of classic cheeses from Switzerland, Emmi Le Gruyère AOP and other traditional cheeses has a new look. Each label is uniquely designed with symbols that relate to the cheesemaking region through Scherenschnitte, which translates to “scissor cut,” the traditional art of Swiss paper cutting.
This folk art emerged in Switzerland in the 1800’s and remains a tradition today – perhaps because its national symbols – cows, mountains, and fir trees – fit the art form perfectly.
The inspiration of Scherenschnitte also symbolizes the art, craft and skill that is part of the cheesemaking culture at Emmi. Featured on the Le Gruyère AOP label is a Brown Swiss Cow, which is essential to cheese production in Switzerland. It also shows the Castle of Les Gruyères, an iconic landmark in the region, and an Evergreen Tree, typical to the Alpine geography.
For more information about Emmi’s traditional cheeses from Switzerland, visit: emmiusa.com