How can something as simple as some hundreds and thousands sprinkled over some buttered white bread bring so much joy to so many people for so long?
In Hobart, in 1929, the Mercury reported on a children's party (how does one get that job?) where "the children will start their party with fairy bread and butter and hundreds and thousands, and cakes, tarts, and home-made cakes ..."
And since that day, Australian children have been treated to the most simple of sandwiches but one which never fails to please.
November 24 is National Fairy Bread Day, a day for the ultimate nostalgic feels and a chance to support the mental health of Australia's youth via ReachOut.com.
Fairy Bread Day started back in 2014 when founder Adam Schell joked there should be a day to celebrate the iconic party food.
This year the reins have been handed to long-time supporter, the family-owned Australian company Dollar Sweets, to take Fairy Bread Day to the next level.
Founded in 1998, ReachOut.com is a leading digital mental health service that provides specially targeted information and tools to help Australian youth be well and stay well, regardless of their location, gender or sexuality.
On National Fairy Bread Day share a plate of fairy bread, or try one of our extra-special recipes, and get friends and family to donate via fairybreadday.com. Donors can pledge their donations via the site until December 1.
Miranda Higgins, managing director of Dollar Sweets, said the idea was to create a brighter future for Australia's youth in one of the brightest ways possible.
"We want to ensure all young people have access to the tools they need to support their mental health," she said.
"ReachOut.com is the perfect partner we can grow with year on year and in one of the most challenging times in history, there are a lot of kids doing it tough right now.
"We want Fairy Bread Day to be a celebration and the big question is how are you going to make it!"
To learn more about Fairy Bread Day, visit fairybreadday.com.
And now, if you want to take your fairy bread to the next level, here's some ways to pimp your sprinkles.
Fairy bread Caramilk slice
150g plain flour
110g brown sugar
50g desiccated coconut
185g butter, room temperature
80g Dollar Sweets 100's and 1000's
2 x 400g tins sweetened condensed milk
60ml golden syrup
350g Caramilk chocolate, melted
60g copha, melted
mini toasts spread with butter and sprinkled with 100's and 1000's, to decorate
1. Combine the flour, sugar and coconut in a food processor. Blitz until combined. Add 125g of the softened butter and blitz to form a dough, then add 100's and 1000's and pulse until just combined. Press mixture into 28cmx18cm lamington tin. Bake 180C for 30min (leave the oven on).
2. In a large bowl combine remaining butter, sweetened condensed milk and golden syrup. Mix well then pour over base. Bake for 20-25 min or until golden. Remove and cool completely.
3. Combine melted Caramilk and copha, pour over the cooled caramel and smooth with a spatula. Gently press mini fairy breads (made from mini toasts) into the surface then refrigerate for at least four hours or until chocolate has set firm.
4. Cut into pieces to serve.
Makes 16 serves.
Fairy bread baklava
one packet of filo pastry, thawed
1 loaf white bread, crusts cut off
250g butter, melted
450g pecan nuts, blitzed in food processor until fine, stirred with 1 tsp ground cinnamon
220g caster sugar
juice of 1/2 lemon
Dollar Sweets 100s and 1000s, to decorate
1. Use a little melted butter to grease the base and sides of a 30x23cm tin.
2. Trim filo sheets to fit the tin (leave five sheets slightly larger for the top layer as it tends to shrink when baking).
3. In a medium saucepan combine sugar, honey, lemon juice and 180ml water. Heat over a medium to high heat until boiling, stirring until sugar is dissolved, then reduce heat to low and boil for an additional four minutes without stirring. Remove from heat and let syrup cool while preparing the baklava.
4. Preheat the oven to 160C.
5. Place a sheet of filo sheet into the bottom of the tin, brush with butter. Repeat 10 times (so there are 10 buttered layers of filo).
6. Top the filo with half the nut filling, flatten then top with a layer of white bread slices. Brush with butter then repeat with five more buttered layers of filo, nuts, bread then five buttered filo layers to finish.
7. Score the top of the pastry into quarters lengthwise then make four cuts diagonally to make diamond shapes. Bake the baklava for 1 hour and 15 mins until golden on top.
8. Remove from the oven and pour the honey syrup evenly over the hot baklava. Allow the baklava to sit, uncovered, overnight to allow the syrup to soak through the layers then sprinkle with 100s and 1000s and cut through into diamond shapes.
Fairy bread ice cream cake
You will need to begin this recipe the day before
1 loaf white bread, crusts removed, buttered on both sides
250g unsalted butter, softened to room temperature
1.5l good-quality vanilla ice-cream, softened to room temperature
1/2 tsp butter flavoured essence (optional)
Dollar Sweets 100s and 1000s
1. Grease a Dolly Varden tin or pudding tin generously with butter. Use a cookie cutter or glass to cut a circle in one of the slices of bread (large enough to cover the small circle at the top of the tin. Press into the tin. Cut buttered bread slices into rectangles to line the sides of the tin, press into the sides of the tin. Cut bread slices into elongated triangles to fill the gaps between the rectangles, press into the gaps of the tin.
2. Combine ice-cream with eight buttered slices of bread and butter essence in a food processor. Blend until smooth. Spoon into the bread-lined tin and smooth the bottom (you may have excess mixture left over, depending on the size of your tin, discard/eat any excess!). Cut out buttered bread to line the base. Cover with alfoil and freeze overnight.
3. Thirty minutes before serving, remove the cake from the fridge and allow it to sit at room temperature. Pour Dollar Sweets 100s and 1000s into a baking tray, brush cake with softened butter and roll into the 100s and 1000s to coat. Cut into wedges to serve.
Fairy bread fudge
450g raw caster sugar
400g double cream
50g unsalted butter
1 tbsp glucose syrup
2 tsp vanilla bean paste
9 French mini toasts (found in cracker section of supermarket)
store-bought vanilla frosting
Dollar Sweets 100s and 1000s
1. Grease and line a 20x20cm square baking tin with baking paper.
2. Combine sugar, cream, butter and glucose syrup in a large, heavy-based saucepan over a medium heat, stirring constantly until sugar has dissolved.
3. Increase heat to high, stir occasionally until mixture reaches the soft-ball stage (116C) on a sugar thermometer. Remove pan from heat and allow it to sit until temperature drops to 110C (about 10 mins). Add vanilla bean paste and a generous pinch of salt.
4. Use a wooden spoon to vigorously beat the mixture until the temperature drops right down to 60C. This will take quite some time (you might get a sore arm!) but is important to keep stirring as this helps the fudge to form a smooth, creamy texture.
5. Once the temperature has come down to 60C spoon into the prepared tray, smooth the top and allow it to sit at room temperature (do not refrigerate) to set completely (overnight).
6. Once set, turn fudge out onto a clean surface and cut into nine equal squares. To make fairy bread topping, spread some vanilla frosting onto each French mini toast and then sprinkle with Dollar Sweets 100s and 1000s. Squeeze a tiny bit of edible glue onto the bottom of each toast and affix one to the centre of each fudge square to serve.
Fairy bread and butter pudding
600g good-quality vanilla ice cream, melted and cooled
24 slices plain, white bread
butter, softened to room temperature
Dollar Sweets 100s and 1000s
1. Whisk together melted ice cream, eggs and a pinch of salt.
2. Butter both sides of the bread slices, cut off and discard crusts. Cut each square into quarters. Arrange slices into the ovenproof dishes. Pour over the custard mixture and allow it to sit at room temperature for 30 minutes to allow the liquids to soak into the bread.
3. Preheat the oven to 180C. Bake the puddings for 35-40 minutes until the custard is set and the puddings are golden on top. Sprinkle with Dollar Sweets 100s and 1000s and serve warm.
Note: You will need 6 x 375ml capacity, oven-proof dishes for this recipe or you can also use one, large ovenproof dish for this recipe. Increase cooking time by 10-15 mins.
180g fresh egg whites (about 6 large eggs)
300g caster sugar
1 tbsp cornflour
1 1/2 tsp white vinegar
2 tbsp Dutch cocoa powder, softed
dark chocolate melts, to decorate
Dollar Sweets Chocolate 100's and 1000's, to decorate
1. Preheat a conventional oven to 120C. Line two large baking trays with baking paper.
2. Over a double boiler, in a large glass bowl, whisk together the granulated sugar and the egg whites stirring constantly until the mixture reaches approximately 46C and the sugar grains have dissolved and are no longer gritty to the touch.
3. Pour this mixture into the metal bowl of an electric mixer, fit a whisk attachment and whip on high speed until it is thick, glossy and white in colour and firm peaks have formed.
4. Stir together the cornflour and vinegar and add to the meringue, then add the cocoa powder and whisk until just combined.
5. Spoon/pipe the meringue mixture onto the prepared baking trays (the meringues should be about 8cm each). Bake for around 3 hours or until the meringues have dried completely.
6. Melt the dark chocolate and dip the edges of the meringues in, scraping off any excess. Place onto a baking rack then sprinkle with the Dollar Sweets Chocolate 100's and 1000's and allow to set. Repeat with remaining meringues.
Makes about 24.
You will need to begin this recipe the day before
150g almond meal
150g pure icing sugar, sifted
5 egg whites
130g caster sugar
1/2 cup Dollar Sweets 100's and 1000's
2l vanilla ice-cream, softened
To decorate - store bought cookie dough with Dollar Sweets 100's and 1000's mixed through, rolled into 1 tbsp balls
1. Line a 23cm round springform pan with baking paper. Spoon softened ice cream into the pan, smoothing the top with a spatula. Cover and freeze overnight.
2. Preheat the oven to 180C (160C fan). Draw a 23cm round circle on two pieces of baking paper then line two baking trays with the paper.
3. To make the fairy meringue layers, combine almond meal and icing sugar in a large bowl. Mix well. Whisk egg whites with an electric beater until soft peaks form, then slowly add caster sugar and continue whisking until stiff peaks form. Add to almond meal mixture and gently fold through, then add 100's and 1000's and fold through. Spoon mixture into a piping bag fitted with a 2cm plain nozzle, then pipe in a spiral shape to fill the 23cm circle outline on the baking paper. Repeat with the remaining circle so you have two.
4. Bake for 15-20 mins, rotating the trays half way, until meringues are crisp. Turn off the oven and open the door, leave meringues inside the oven to cool.
5. When ready to serve, layer ice-cream between the two meringues and top with cookie dough balls to serve.