Open sandwiches use one kind of bread and have the filling on top. The bread slices can be cut into squares, triangles, or rounds. Sometimes butter is spread lightly on top and pieces of cheese or meat fillings are placed on top. They may be garnished with slices of carrots, raisins, pickles, and the like to make them more attractive. Open sandwiches are similar to canapés, a type of French hors d’œuvre.
Pinwheels are made of a flatbread bread (like a tortilla or lavash bread) that is cut lengthwise, about 3/8 inch thick. Fresh bread is preferable because it’s easy to roll and will not crack. Trim crusts (if there are any) and flatten long slices with a rolling pin. Spread bread with softened butter or margarine and your choice of any smooth filling, like creamed cheese, marmalades, cheese pimiento, peanut butter, jams, and jellies. Smooth fillings are ideal for pinwheel sandwiches, because they do not have bulk and can be spread thinly. Place sweet pickles or several stuffed olives at the end of slice. Roll the bread up like a jelly roll. Wrap each rolled sandwich individually and chill for several hours or until they are firm. When ready to serve, unwrap the rolled sandwiches and cut into 1/2 inch slices. Use a sharp knife or a bread knife so the cuts clear and neat. Arrange and serve them on a platter. Garnish if needed.
Closed tea sandwiches may be made ahead of time and frozen. They should be removed from the freezer at least three hours before they are to be served.
Remove the crusts of a day-old bread. With cookie cutters of various shapes and sizes, cut as many pieces as possible from each sandwich. Try to have a variety of squares, rectangles, and oblong shapes. Save the scraps and crusts for crumbs. For each sandwich, spread butter on one piece of bread and filling on the other. Top the filled side with the buttered side. Place on wax paper or in a clean, damp towel and place in an airtight container to freeze.
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