Imagine Bravely, Recycle Wonder
I have the nineteen year old daughter of friends visiting from Italy this month. The daughter is absolutely wonderful----funny, charming, happy, willing to clean and cook. Without even being asked, no less (“I love to cook”). Amazing.
So when, during week one, she requested that I buy her some “square bread” (a direct translation from the Italian/French “pain carré”), I took a minute to compose myself before clarifying: “Do you mean white bread?”
“Yes, yes, that’s it. Can we get some white bread?”
O.k. I’m having a full-circle moment about now. My 50’s-60’s childhood meant white-bread sandwiches every day for lunch. Although I grew up to be a connoisseur of all recipes SPAM-related, the very thought of white bread and baloney, white bread P & J, white bread and anything except possibly bread pudding, makes me cringe. Unlike so many other foods from my youth, I came to hate the stuff, and vowed when I went off to college, never to eat another slice.
Yet here is sweet Marta, recently arrived from one of the world’s most fantastic bread-producing nations, asking for something so simple, so blah, and apparently in her family’s cuisine, so rare. This darling teen from Siena wants her some American white bread, yes-sir- howdy, and so, she shall have it. That evening she showed me how she makes toasted white bread melted cheese sandwiches. Rather good, actually. Then later in the week she suggested Nutella on white bread and that was amazingly lip-smacking, too. Could it be that Wonder has changed the w.b. recipe? Upped its game a little??? So I gave it the classic test and sure enough, you can still take one whole slice and squeeze it into a round ball smaller than a robin’s egg. Ain’t that something.