For Mozzarella in Carrozza Nigella refers to 'Plastic bread’? I know what ‘plastic cheese’ is, that individually wrapped manufactured stuff, but I can’t think what Nigella would be referring to by plastic bread. Enlighten me?
Mozarella In Carrozza (from NIGELLA BITES) is an Italian sandwich that is filled with mozzarella, dipped in egg and cooked in a frying pan. The name "in carrozza" means "in a carriage" and refers to the bread "carrying" the molten mozzarella.
Nigella suggests using regular sliced white bread, from the type of loaf that is soft, with a close texture and comes already sliced in the supermarket. This is sometimes referred to as "plastic bread" in the UK. It is difficult to pinpoint exactly when the term came into use but it is probably after the introduction of industrial processes for bread making (the Chorleywood method) in the 1960s, which meant that loaves of bread were soft, consistent in texture, size and thickness of slices and also stayed fresh and soft for longer. These factors (along with, perhaps, a lack of flavour) led to people referring to it as plastic bread, a term that has stuck to this day. The advantage of using a soft, white bread in this particular recipe is that it is easy to press the edges of the slices together to seal them tightly and prevent the mozzarella from oozing out during cooking.