Dining on... cholera! Eric Kendall | Posted: 04 October 2016

Is this the least appetising name ever devised for a dish?

'Cholera' is the Goms Valley's traditional pie which dates from the time of a cholera epidemic in 1836 when embattled locals, not daring to leave home, conjured up dishes from scraps in the store cupboard. After the epidemic, local chefs promoted the concept of putting regional ingredients into a savoury pie, and the cholera dish has remained a classic of the region – and kept its bizarre name – to this day.

4 large waxy potatoes
200g seasoned bacon – diced
1 leek – thinly sliced
2 large onions – thinly sliced
200g raclette cheese – grated
2 pears – peeled and chopped
2 cooking apples – peeled and chopped
salt and pepper
2 sheets of puff pastry
1 beaten egg yolk (for glazing the pastry)

1. Boil the potatoes and leave to cool.
2. Heat the oven to 190°C.
3. Fry the diced bacon in a dry pan and put to one side.
4. Using the same pan, gently fry the onions and leeks in the remaining fat until golden brown.
5. Coarsely grate the cold potatoes.
6. Roll out half the puff pastry and spread with the grated potato, leaving a 2cm border all round.
7. Add a layer of pear and apple; then leek, bacon and cheese; and season with salt and pepper.
8. Wet the edges of the pastry and cover with the second sheet, pressing down to join the two.
9. Brush the top of the pastry with the beaten egg.
10. Bake for 30 mins or until golden – and then enjoy!

Related Holidays

Hotel Castle in Blitzingen

You can try this tasty recipe at home as none of the ingredients are difficult to source. Alternatively, take a winter holiday in the snow to the Goms Valley in Switzerland and ask your genial host, Peter (who also happens to be an excellent chef) to serve you some 'cholera' as part of one of his excellent nightly dinners.

More about our snow holiday in Blitzingen >

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