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Healthy food is something I just love. And unlike what most people think it doesn't have to be tasteless and bland. By cooking in this large five portion grill I can cook not only for myself but also for my family and i can feel good doing it because I know I will be serving up healthy low fat food. The cooking areas on this machine are super non stick. I call it that because the cooking plates are extremely easy to clean. The surface seems to just wipe off, even meat juices that look like they have been burnt on with a blowtorch wipe away with a damp cloth.
I wasn't aware what exactly made this hinged BBQ looking machine be any more successful at reducing the fat content of my food than any other way of cooking. But When I read the outside of the box and I then realised that it is slanted ever so slightly and this encourages the excess fat to run down, out and away from what you are cooking. There is a very simple fat collecting tray that you position at the end of the ridged plates and this collects all the nasty stuff that otherwise would end up on your hips. I thought this would mean the food would be dry and tasteless but it really isn't. This can be explained by the high temperature hot plates seeping the meat on both sides when the hinged top of the grill is closed. By sealing the meat quickly the juices are trapped inside and all that runs down the ridges is fat. This grill works great at cooing meat, vegetables, fish and poultry.
It really is a great looking machine. It stands out in our kitchen But of all the right reasons. It's modern looking with it's steel sections large easy to hold and use handle and sleek outer casing with the George Foreman name on top. There is a vivid light that tells me when the plates have reached the right temperature for cooking. And also I can put thick bits of meat on this because the hinges adjust to the thickness of the food between the top and bottom sections. There is a spatula included and also a recipe book and this is one of the very few appliances that we have actually used some of the ideas from the book
This can hold maybe three large burgers and two chicken breasts and yes that is five protons but you can still pop in a few mushrooms here and there in between these meats.
There is a simple to use timer too on this grill so that way you will know when the right amount of time has passed to ensure your food is cooked. It is only when you look at what comes out of your food that you will realise how good a purchase any George Foreman Grill actually is. And the fact that the food comes out tasting great makes it all the more worth getting.
This is one of those appliances every kitchen needs. This grill is fantastic, cooks all meats (beef, chicken, fish, pork) very well and is totally non greasy which means less fat. I love the fact that with this grill it takes less than 5 minutes to cook a well done steak, fillet or whole chicken!. It's also an excellent sandwich maker, in fact the sandwiches look like you're a professional chef as they come out so brilliantly (no need to squash your sandwiches unlike some sandwich makers!). I love that its a portable device meaning you can shift it anywhere unlike the conventional grill. The stainless steel it's made of makes it so easy to clean, although I wish the plates were removable as sometimes its a bit of hassle as you can't reach those tricky corners!
The recipe leaflet that comes with it is very helpful. I made the Prosciutto recipe and it was delicious!. Basically if you love grilling food, this grill is excellent. From kebabs, to sausages and burgers you can pretty much cook a good meal with this. Ideal for students or a small family or singletons! I've had this grill for two years now and so far it hasn't given me any problems. Now that we can't really go out and have a proper barbecue (due to the never ending cold!) this grill makes up for it.
You have to admire Mr Foreman for changing his lifestyle and reinventing himself as a lean grilling machine sort of man. To date, we have bought ourselves several of his products for the house over the years and have yet to be disappointed by any of the purchases. This is one of the larger appliances that you can buy, the 14053 grill might have a difficult to remember name, but it comes with all the essentials that you would need.
Alongside the basic griller, we have the non-drip tray to collect the fat from the cooking, a guarantee for a year, though I feel two years would have been fairer considering the price tag of thirty odd pounds and we also get a spatula and a recipe book. The recipe book was one of my favourite additions as it just gives you a few extra ideas to spark some creativity.
You plug into the mains and layer your food on the griddle then grill until complete. We use it for toasties, great for melted cheese late at night when you crave that evening snack! It also works great for vegetables, small portions of chicken and meat and also fish. If you grill cod steaks on this, they come out wonderful with a succulent outer crisp to them.
The machine is supposed to cook five portions of food, but I would say that is a generous estimate. It would just about do you for four I reckon and if you were looking at cooking for a family of four, then you might need to break the cooking time up into two separate batches.
The collecting tray is a great ideas as it collects all that nasty fat and you can easily wipe it clean afterwards then rinse off. The machine itself stays clean throughout cooking, because the lid stays out of harms way. If you need to wipe it, kitchen towels work well to remove smears. Cooking time can be reduced by using this machine, I reckon it shaves off a good ten minutes off your standard oven time, because this heats up to temperature within a matter of minutes. A good bit of kit, handy for healthy eating and snacks.
I have to chuckle - I wrote this review without reading previous reviews. I see that I am adding little, just confirming previous comments. At least all readers will know that duplicity of comments by a truly independent review does reflect the reality of the grill.
RELIABILITY - I have owned 4 of these type of kitchen grills. The first was a fine George Foreman that lasted about 8 years and gave sterling service. I foolishly replaced it with a Tesco own brand £20 cheapie that lasted about 6 months. So, 10 out of 10 for George Foreman grills for reliability.
EASE OF CLEANING - I have a removeable plates George Foreman in my holiday home. It is very good and easy to clean, but in the UK one with removeable plates comands a £20+ price premium! That is absurd pricing!
This model does not have removeable plates, so needs a quick clean/wipe quickly after each use.
SIZE - it has a nice large cooking surface meaning that you can grill a breakfast for 2 in one go. Some have smaller plates only suitable for cooking for one.
VERSATILITY - I also use it for making panninis :)
USEFUL FEATURE - It also has 'fingers' on the front leading edge of the bottom plate - not all electric grill have them. They are useful in stopping 'round food' ( like sausages) rolling and falling on the floor when you open the plates.
DOWNFALL - This model is good value for money, however, beware. I have just cooked a 1/4lb burger which was a little over 1/2 inch thick. It came out well cooked on the outside, but underdone in the middle. This could cause serious problems if you are cooking chicken, or food that is not thoroughly thawed, or quite thick (like thick sausage), because the meat will be undercooked and the bugs not killed by cooking.
What this iitem really screams out for is a temperature control so that thicker food items can be cooked more slowly to make sure that they are thoroughly cooked through.
We contemplated getting a George Foreman (GF) for a number of weeks, but with the huge range available we gave up trying to determine which the best was for us. Until we received one as a gift! Problem solved!
So, we cracked it open and plugged it in... looked for the on/off switch and couldn't find one. The George Foreman is so simple, and has one light on the front (to tell you if it is on or not). A flick of the switch next to the socket and the beast begins to warm up instantly. Within a minute or so the grill is ready to be used.
Slide the drip tray infront of the GF and put on your burger/vegetables/chicken/whatever-you-want-to-cook onto the heat plate and let the grill do its magic.
We have the anniversary edition which does not have a removable plate, this causes a bit of a pain when cleaning. But as long as you wipe the surface of the grill shortly after use (giving the plates enough time to cool down, but not enough for the fat to solidify) it really isn't that much effort to clean.
One major improvement would be to have a temperature control. We often make home made burgers and the outside cooks far too quickly and lightly burns (giving a bit of a BBQ effect). I suppose if the patties were thinner, we wouldn't get this problem - but we like our meat!
Overall, a great piece of kit and it is amazing to see just how much fat leaks out of these products. Definitely gets a "thumbs up" from me, next time I would like to find one with temperature control and removable heat plates.
When I first heard that George Foreman had put his name to a grill which claimed to be a healthier way to cook meat my instant thought was why an old bloke who plays a ukulele would want to promote a cooking device, then I realised that it wasn't the slapstick comic from the old television movies but the ex boxer from the 1970's era, probably most famous for the 1974 'Rumble in the Jungle' fight against Muhammad Ali Or maybe his surprise comeback in 1987, regaining his title in the mid nineties.
The 'Foreman Grill' range, which started its life in 1994, is quite extensive with many different sized units to cater for all tastes, but all the 'grills' can cook many foods, even from frozen, such as Burgers, fish, vegetables and more, including toasted sandwiches. It cooks the food in half the time, using the top and bottom grill at the same time, and it leaves the finished product with the minimum amount of fat and grease, the fatty deposits being held in the drip tray rather than your body.
Anyway, I was still a little wary about the claims that the Foreman 'lean mean Fat reducing grilling machine' would help cook a nice enough burger without the fat and unhealthy stuff seeping through my arteries.... But I had heard a lot of good things about them, so I eventually jumped on the band wagon and bought one.
The machine I bought, and am reviewing is the 'George Foreman 10th Anniversary special Edition', which is a bit of a beast in itself.
As I said earlier, I was a little dubious at the claims around this machine so I was in two minds whether I should spend my hard earned cash on the 10th anniversary edition, which came out in 2004, (obviously).
When I eventually bought one and got it home I wanted to give it a test run straight away, what with me being a man and having a new toy. So I cleared a space on a kitchen worktop, as this 'beast' of a machine needs a bit of room, measuring in at 430 by 520 by 180mm, and plugged it in, taking some frozen burgers from the freezer whilst the 'beast' warmed up, the little amber light on the top of the machine going out when the temperature was reached.
Once the amber light went out I placed the burgers onto the bottom plate, the two little 'patties' looking very lost on the massive grey base. Then I lowered the top plate gently onto them, closing the lid so to speak, listening as it hissed like a gargling python with tonsillitis.
With-in minutes the aroma coming through the thin smoke was beginning to make my mouth water as the burgers gently cooked away inside the 'beast', the grease and fatty deposits seeping into the drip tray which I had placed at the front of it, (per instructions, because if you don't you'll have one messy worktop).
Anyway, after a few minutes I opened the lid and was amazed at how 'cooked' the burgers seemed, so flipping them over with the little plastic fork like spatula that come with the machine, I closed the lid again and waited a few more minutes before checking on the progress of my much wanted burger.
But by the time I had prepared the buns and cut up an onions the George Foreman had cooked my burgers, expelling a lot of grease and 'crap' into the drip tray.
In fact, the burgers were cooked that quickly that I had to slice them open to make sure they were cooked thoroughly, and, to my amazement, they were perfect.
** TECHNICAL DETAILS...
* Double none stick coated plates, top and bottom.
* Floating hinge for the perfectly cooked food
* Large cooking space, capable of holding up to ten burgers
* Black cool handle
* Sloping channels so grease travels away from the food.
Also comes with...
* Two grease holding drip trays, which sit under front of machine
* Two plastic utensils for turning the food, also helpful for cleaning the plates.
** IN CONCLUSION...
What a fantastic invention, although nothing really that new, but this massive beast, with its sloping sides and hinged lid, is an ideal way to cook a healthy burger without the worries of blocking up your arteries.
The casing my look a bit dull and grey on top, and it does get a little warm when in use, but the looks are nothing compared to the speed that this cooks the food, (saving you money on fuel bills), and the quality of the finished product.
The amount of fat and grease that seeps into the drips tray from the food as it is cooking is remarkable, if a little sickening when you realise that the majority of this , what can only be described as 'crap' ends up in you body, but this doesn't seem to dry the food out at all, giving you a tasty, meaty morsel that wont stick to the roof of your mouth.
I have cooked many different things on this beast of a machine, including home made burgers, frozen burgers, chicken fillets, onions and more and I have never had anything which has come out 'uncooked' or dry.
And yes, I do realise that cooking meat on a normal grill tray allows a lot of 'crap' to fall away from the meat but, with the Foreman, it seems that the pressure from the two plates gently pushing together squeezes a lot more of the 'crap' out and onto the drip trays, leaving juicy food without the worry of clogging up your arteries.
You can fit a lot on this Anniversary edition, I have managed to get eight good sized burgers on in one go, still leaving room to cook a few onions on the side, so it can be used in place of a standard grill or even a barbeque, (as I do believe that special stands are available for that very purpose, although I do not own one as yet).
As for cleaning the beast, well, some of the George Foreman range come with removable plates, which really do help in the cleaning process, but sadly the Anniversary edition does not, so it does take a bit of time to clean after use, but this is not enough of a negative to spoil the enjoyment and tastiness of what this massive beast conjures up
To clean it you simply use the plastic spatulas to scrape the excess 'crap' into the waiting drip trays, easiest when the beast is still warm, and then simply give the plates a good wipe out with a damp cloth... Do not use anything abrasive as this may damage the none stick plates... That's it, the cooking plates are now clean.
I have had mine for a few years now and tend to use it quite regularly, cooking many different dishes in a shorter time than a traditional grill/oven, thus saving me money on electricity/gas bills in the long run. The beast is well made and totally reliable, plus, after many burgers and chicken fillets later, it is still running strong, even after five years, so they are built to last, which is a good thing in this day and age.
If I recall correctly I think I paid around £50.00 for my 'grill' five years ago, which, as I now know, was a complete bargain, and nowadays, after a quick web search, I find the prices for this massive cooking machine vary, the cheapest being just under the £40.00 mark, although the prices do go up and up. ( I found one at nearly £120 from a catalogue company... WHY..?).
So at the 40 mark you will be getting a bargain and you will soon realise that the time saved in cooking will save you in money on your bills at the end of the day.
In all, a great healthy way to cook your burgers or chicken fillets with the knowledge that you're helping your body stay a little healthier. Once you start to use this, or even any of the Foreman range, you will wonder why you haven't been using it for years
Even though the George Foreman range gives you a healthier option to cooking your favourite burgers and the like you should still stick to a healthy lifestyle, including exercise and the odd bit of salad stuff, maybe an apple or two as well.