Switzerland or officially the Swiss Confederation, is the best place to be born in the world, ranking number 1 in the EIU ‘where to be born’ index (previously known as quality of life index).
The Swiss Confederation was established on 1 August 1291, which is celebrated annually as the Swiss National Day. It has not been in a state of war internationally since 1815 and ranks number 5 in the Global Peace index.
Some random interesting facts
The Swiss eat more chocolate than any other nation in the world, 11.3 kg per year.
One is never more than 10 miles from a lake in Switzerland.
In Switzerland, it is illegal to keep just one guinea pig. They must be kept in pairs.
Albert Einstein came up with his theory of relativity and the formula E=MC2 in Bern, Switzerland.
The Sonnenberg tunnel in Lucerne is able to house up to 20,000 people for an extended period of time as a fallout shelter. It serves as the world’s largest nuclear bomb shelter.
The Dalai Lama owns the smallest vineyard in the world, which is located in Switzerland.
The most expensive hotel room in the world is The Royal Penthouse suite at Hotel President Wilson in Geneva. Bill Gates and Michael Douglas have both been residents. At $83,000 per night you can enjoy your own private elevator, gym, 12 bedrooms and 12 marble bathrooms, a Steinway Grand Piano, and a panoramic view of Lake Geneva.
Swiss cuisine shows many regional influences as well as French, German and Italian. Traditional dishes include Rosti (fried grated potato), Papet Vaudois (potatoes, leek with sausage) , Zürcher Geschnetzeltes (veal and mushroom in a cream sauce), Bűndnernusstorte (caramelised nut filled pastry) and Zopf (plaited loaf). Although I had a recommendation from Valerie who I had met on holiday, my friends and family well know that I am addicted to cheese, so there really was only one recipe for me to cook; it had to be Fondue! My sister and brother in law joined us for the evening and suffice to say, it was truly scrumptious.
Prep time: 5 mins
Cook time: 15-20 mins
2 French sticks (a day old), cut into cubes
1 clove of garlic
350ml dry white
400g Vacherin Fribourgeois, grated
400g Gruyere, grated
2 tsp of kirsch
Half the garlic and rub it around the fondue pot
Dissolve the cornstarch in the kirsch
Place the fondue pot on the stove over a low heat
Pour the wine into the fondue pot and bring it to a simmer
Gradually add the grated cheese, stirring continuously with a wooden spoon until it melts together.
Add the kirsch and the pepper.
Transfer to the serving stand, with the burner on a steady temperature.
Serve with the cubed bread.