Spread (pun intended!) globally, people in different countries have their own spin on the humble toast. The happiness of a Singaporean kid with butter and kaya on toast is equivalent to an Australian kid at the sight of multi-coloured bread slices.
From Australia to Argentina and Japan, spread love everywhere 5 toast traditions around the world that you can try having daily or as an occasional treat!
1. “Hundreds and thousands” sprinkles and margarine (Australia)
Vegemite? No, the next best thing Aussies love on their toast is sprinkles! These are called fairy bread, and these multi-coloured sprinkles are referred to as “hundreds and thousands” which you can easily get at the supermarket. The history of fairy bread dates all the way back to the 1920s in Australia where the recipe was first mentioned in The Hobart Mercury newspaper¹. It’s usually served at children’s birthday parties as a nostalgic treat.
How to make it: The recipe has always required just three ingredients: white bread, margarine and plenty of “hundreds and thousands” to top it all off! Cut into two or four triangles and serve.
2. Milk, sugar and vanilla (Argentina and Uruguay)
Breakfast toast is a sweet affair in South America; in Argentina and Uruguay, dulce de leche (caramelised sweetened milk) on toast is usually served. Dulce de leche is traditionally made from the process of caramelising milk alone — sometimes with sugar and milk — and is also the main ingredient of savoury treats like pies!
Fun fact! Whether dulce de leche belongs to either country remains up in the air. In 2003, Argentina’s attempt to declare it as their UNESCO cultural heritage was sidestepped by Uruguay. The latter claimed that dulce de leche should be considered as a Gastronomical Heritage of the Rio de la Plata (the region concerning the two countries) instead!
3. Peanut butter and strawberry jam (North America)
More commonly known as a “peanut butter and jelly” on toast, the love for this combination has spread across the border — many Canadians love it as well! When it boils down to such simplicity, ingredient quality is arguably the most important thing to consider.
Tip: Try a flavourful jam in another fruity flavour than just strawberry if you’ve got adventurous taste buds!
4. Beer, cheddar, English mustard and Worcestershire sauce (Wales, The United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland)
Said to originate from the South Wales Valleys, welsh rarebit (or rabbit) is a traditional Welsh toast that has been popular since the 1500s². Welsh Rarebit Day is even celebrated on 3 September! Don’t fret, no rabbits have been harmed in the making of this toast — it involves a beer roux with cheddar, English mustard and Worcestershire sauce spread over bread slices instead. Everything is then put under a grill or in an oven to bake for a few minutes until it turns golden brown and crispy. Serve it alongside some salad for the perfect pub food.
5. Black sesame paste “kuro neri goma” (Japan)
For those of us seeking Asian flavours, try “kuro neri goma” on toast instead! It’s a paste of black sesame seeds that are usually ground with either sesame oil honey for a hint of sweetness. It imparts a roasted nutty flavour with deep earthy tones to any sweet or savoury dish, and is best enjoyed alone on a slice of fluffy white bread (“shokupan” in Japanese)⁴.
Discover the wide variety of bread available online at FairPrice today and try these exciting international toasts one day!
¹ Vanni, K 2021, Fairy bread, The Spruce Eats, viewed 5 April 2021
² Witts, N 2017, Brief history of Welsh rarebit, The Culture Trip, viewed 5 April 2021
³ Fajardo, M 2017, A brief history of dulce de leche, The Culture Trip, viewed 6 April 2021
⁴ Ung, J 2019, Japanese black sesame paste, The Spruce Eats, viewed 7 April 2021