Fairy Bread, Spiders, Traffic Lights, and Cheese and Marmite Scrolls were the epitome of every early 00’s birthday party. Maddy Crutchley wants to bring them back.
Despite only being 21, I am hyper-aware that my body has aged. I can’t handle food of any intensity. I’ve kissed coffee goodbye, I’ve limited my sugar intake and I’ve tried to cut out foods that have things in them that I can’t pronounce. Largely, it seems to have done me some good. I feel more energetic, my skin has cleared up a bit and I don’t have a sore stomach very often. However, since being stuck at home, my mind has begun to wander backwards, in a hypoglycaemic dream, looking for the hit that only sugar and empty carbs from the early 2000s could bring.
As a kid, I had a massive sweet tooth. My mum, bless her heart, did her best to prevent me from gorging on unhealthy food. I was limited to two lollies a couple times a week for dessert, had ice-cream on special occasions and only really ate chocolate at Easter, Halloween and Christmas. Despite her best efforts to keep me from my sugar highs, she couldn’t control me at birthday parties. I would basically plant myself next to plates of food, ignoring other kids in favour of sugar and salt. My plastic plate would be so full of crappy snacks that I would put extras into my goodie bag and eat them later in the day. I was like a squirrel preparing for winter. Now, since SHE ISN’T THE BOSS OF ME ANYMORE, I’ve decided to dust off those recipes and fall into a sugary slumber again. Please consume these with caution.
Fairy Bread was my absolute favourite party food. It was so pretty and so different from everything else I would usually eat. I remember meticulously staring at the aftermath of each bite, marvelling at the way the bright colours would transfer from the hundreds and thousands, onto the snow white bread. My first trial saw me remaking the basic version; basically just sprinkling the colour beads onto white bread. This, honestly, was very disappointing and weird. I decided to make them a little fancier than the old-school version I used to eat, to try and salvage my fond memories.
Hundreds and thousands
Spread the margarine over two pieces of bread, in an even layer (if it’s too thick, you’re going to get a full mouth of it, if it’s too thin, you’re going to lose all your beautiful sprinkles). Generously sprinkle your hundreds and thousands onto the bread and use a tablespoon to apply light pressure and make them stick. Press the two pieces of bread together and then use a weight to flatten them even further. Cut off the crusts, making sure the bread is an even square. Take one side of the bread and start to roll in the same way you would for a cinnamon scroll. Once you’ve completed the spiral, apply more pressure to seal!
This was a very, very occasional treat my friend’s mum would make at the end of term. They had a pretty big backyard so she would usually let us drain the glasses clean and then lock us outside for an hour to burn our energy off. These are still really delicious and very, very sweet. They’re also super simple, so I could see myself making these drunk at some point. I would not suggest having them after dinner, as it really had my brain going (especially after I remember the Coke has caffeine in it).
This one is pretty obvious. Take some Coke, pour it in a tall glass, add some ice and dump a good scoop of ice-cream in it. If you do it right, you should get a good fizz which really triggers some memories. IF you want to go a bit harder, add some rum and turn up your music. What else are you going to do on a Friday night?
Okay, I’m going to admit that I really felt like a fully-fledged bartender making this. I’ve made a few banging cocktails in my time, but this was like a full on science experiment. My brother was a big fan of these drinks, and, if we were very well-behaved, we used to get these if we went out to dinner. I remember always being frustrated that these drinks weren’t ACTUALLY in the right order to make a traffic light. I tried to fix that, but the *science* prevented it. You can actually use these methods to make some really good cocktails too!
Orange juice (preferably no pulp)
Green food colouring
Pour just over half a glass of orange juice and add a good amount of ice. Take a funnel or straw (it’s about to get funky) and place the end at the very bottom of the glass. Pour the raspberry cordial through to funnel/straw slowly and you should see the bottom layer start to form with a distinct difference in colour. Remove the funnel/straw quickly and don’t agitate the drink. Finally add green food colouring to the top of the drink, and give it a light stir to disperse the colour. If you’d like to add some vodka, pop it in with the orange juice.
It’s inevitable that if you have any one of these other recipes, you’re going to be feeling pretty energetic afterwards. If you need to bring that energy down and make yourself behave more appropriately indoors, cheese and marmite scrolls are your best friend. They’re crispy and delicious, with a healthy dose of salt. I used to leave these untouched at birthday parties, but they’re probably the one I’m most likely to eat now. You could also swap out the cheeses for something more *gourmet* if you roll that way.
2 cups self-raising flour
2/3 cup of milk
2/4 grated cheddar cheese
¼ grated parmesan cheese
1 tbsp Marmite
Extra tbsp of milk
Set your oven to 200°C. Combine the flour and butter and then use your hands to bring the mixture to a breadcrumb like consistency. Add ¾ of the cheese and 2/3 cup of milk. You should then be able to knead the mixture into a dough. Lightly flour your kitchen bench and gently push the dough out to a thin, even rectangle (you can use an empty glass bottle if you don’t have a rolling pin). Spread the Marmite and remaining cheese across the top of the dough. Roll the dough into a long rope shape and then cut them into single scrolls (about 3-4cm should do it). Place the rolls on a tray with baking paper. Use the extra milk to brush the rolls and then bake for 20 mins!