School's out for summer, in Fanny Cradock's world at least. A little early in the real world perhaps. She is imagining that all over the country harassed mums are being pestered by the cry "Mum, I'm hungry" and just have no idea how to respond favourably to the relentless badgering. There is no need to feel so tormented however, Fanny is on hand. She devotes an entire part-work exclusively to filling-up the perpetually ravenous young folks. Young people, Fanny reckons, are always easier to handle when their stomachs are well-filled. Especially if they are teenagers.
It's not only tumultous teenagers tummies that Fanny is concerned with though. It's their outfits. She simply cannot understand the lack of enthusiasm among the female of the species, in particular, for wearing pretty party frocks. Shockingly the 'gear' they prefer can be summed up as 'The Absolute Minimum'. This normally means, notably in the summer months, 'disreputable' rolled up jeans and equally disreputable bare feet at the end of a day spent incessantly 'trotting about'. Fanny's wrath is saved for skimpy hot pants and gingham outfits, again with 'the minimum', this time over 'the front'. Teenage girls eating habits are like their fashion choices - an inelegant preference for wolfing at the wander and for chomping on 'wedges and wodges' (whatever they may be), particularly in the garden. I don't think Fanny approves.
Fanny still has a suitable snack for them though. She says we should dispense with fancy French names for down-to-earth things at this time (which presumably do not deserve the effort) and simply call them what they are. Bricks. Ones you can eat. That's what she suggests here for those barely gingham-covered reprobates. She borrows the idea, but of course makes them suitable for the English home, from a trip to Tunisia. A considerably conventional ceremony with a cabinet minister's wife showed Fanny how they were made. Presumably Ferrero Rocher weren't around then. The wife was not welcome in her husband's home for the formal occasion (doubtless not because of her chosen attire) but instead was banished to her 'separate and primitive chamber' known as the kitchen. She took three hours to make the 'bricks'.
Fanny says that she is not 'screwy' enough to think that we would spend three hours making snacks for inappropriately dressed teenagers. I am saying nothing. So she has modified the recipe to suit the occasion, or lack of occasion, which ever it really is. Instead of a 'Tunisian paste' made of semolina and water, extravagantly, and lovingly, prepared and cooked on a griddle, she uses shop-bought puff pastry. This allows the 'bricks' to be made at speed to fill the eager youthful mouths, but to otherwise remain authentic. I imagine that this would be the prime concern for the denim-clad teenagers trotting around Fanny's garden.
In Tunisia, squares of paste are filled with freshly milled parsley, minced veal and an egg yolk. Folded into triangles (as surely all 'bricks' are) and deep fried. I switched the veal for some chopped vegetarian sausages, but otherwise I stuck with authenticity all the way. The resulting wedges, or wodges, as indeed they might be, are ideal as hand-held hunger hinderers, especially for garden wanderers in hot pants. Guaranteed to fill up the exposed tummies of teenage girls. And tasty too. No need to be stuck away, shamefully, in the kitchen for hours on end, when you could be outside showing all the shame on your face for the fashion choices of the young. Perfect summer holiday pastime.