Mayonnaise Fancies

The Classic "Mayonnaise Fancy"

Growing up in the 1960’s, processed food was not avoided, but encouraged, and we took advantage of its deliciousness at every chance.  In my home, a favorite sandwich ruled, one which involved only three ingredients – the Mayonnaise Fancy. While the ingredients were few, they were three very special ingredients. The assembly of the sandwich was not to be taken casually, and the accompanying beverages were key to the success of the “Fancy”.  And, of course, presentation played a major part in the simplistic perfection of this delicacy.

The “Mayonnaise Fancy” was as basic as it gets – cheap white bread, mayonnaise, and butter. That’s it. Bread, mayo, butter. The bread had to be fresher than fresh. Preferably the store “house” brand and almost gummy in texture. First the bread was cut into a desired shape with a cookie cutter (we liked stars and hearts… sometimes horses) to “seal” the edges and add style, or fanciness. No trace of crust allowed! The cut-outs were generously buttered before being spread with a thick layer of mayonnaise. Only one brand was ever used – Hellmann’s (Best Foods on the West coast) – ample amounts required. When all was finally brought  together into a sandwich – Voila! – magic on a plate.

The Mayo Fancy was generally served with ice-cold whole milk. However at holiday time, when cut into tiny shapes, with itty-bitty cookie cutters, it was magically transformed from just a sandwich,  into an elegant hors d’oeuvre – and tasted all the  better accompanied with Brut Champagne!  But then, what doesn’t?

                                                      “Viva la Fancy!”


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