Jeremy Godwin (Letters, October 11, 'Just use some bread instead!') refers to the 'medieval practice' of using a slice of bread instead of a plate (or the trendy equivalent: a chunk of slate).

This is, of course, the origin of the Scandinavian 'smørrebrød' or open-faced sandwich.

Peasants, lacking crockery, used a slice of bread in lieu of a plate and this later became the trade mark of the Scandinavian gastronomic experience.

Kent Brooks