“ Sandwich Maker „
"more than just a sandwich toaster!"
I have owned this particular sandwich maker for a couple of years and although it's not the sort of kitchen appliance you use daily, we have been very happy with it.
As it says in the description it has ribbed griddle plates which leave authentic looking stripes on the bread / panini once toasted. They are non - stick coated and the toaster came with a special plastic tool for cleaning off any residue once cooled - I have to say I have never used this and you can usually just wipe it over with kitchen paper once it's cool.
The toaster has variable heat settings and the floating hinge really works so you get great results from thick panini rolls or baguette through to sliced bread.
It's very heavy and well made - can see it lasting years.
Downsides - the plates can't be removed so you have trouble getting crumbs out and might strugglem if you had a cheese meltdown! Also the cord storage on the base is a bit awkward.
But overall very happy.
It's just another sandwich toaster - or is it?
This Kenwood toaster is basically two ribbed hot plates and this allows you to toast pretty much anything. I have used and still own the standard toasted sandwich maker, it makes nice triangle sandwiches and as long as you don't put too much filling and use the right shaped bread you don't have too much mess to clean.
But that's the point how often do you have the right bread and why should you limit the filling in your sandwich. That's the big benefit of this Kenwood toaster you can toast any type of bread, any shape of bread and whatever filling you like.
* The facts*
The toaster has a polished chrome surface, some see this as a benefit due to ease of cleaning but as with any reflective surface it looks a mess if it's not clean and shows every mark. It has two ribbed grill plates with non-stick coating the top plate sits inside the bottom plate as the bottom plate has a small lip all around the edge to keep food in. It has 1800W of power and has 7 heat settings which are set via a dial at the front. Two lights one red for power and another green for ready. You simply plug it in set your heat setting and wait for the green light to pop on - and this doesn't take long. A heat proof handle allows you to open without 3rd degree burns as the toaster does get hot on the outside. The lid sits on a floating hinge to allow even pressure on the sandwich so you don't squeeze all the filling out of one end, it also alows thicker sandwiches to be toasted.
This toaster measures in at roughly 36x34x11cm and has grill plates which are 29x23cm - easily big enough to cope with a well stocked large sandwich, or two sandwich's made from normal bread. On the right of the handle a push in tab allows you to lock the lid as it can be stored in a vertical position. Underneath are hooks to fix the power cable for storage. You can cook other food, chicken, meat, veg etc. in it as well if you wanted.
Well it toasts well, the hot ribbed plates give a nice griddled look to what ever is cooked in it, it doesn't take too long to toast either, I have even put frozen bread in making a cheese sandwich and the cheese has melted by the time the bread has toasted. Some leakage spills out especially cheese and this is the only benefit of the standard sandwich toaster which seals the sandwich at the same time. The top plate sits on top of the sandwich and you can press down the handle if you want to add extra pressure.
As with any Kitchen equipment cleaning the equipment after use has to be easy and hassle free. The Kenwood toaster due to its lip around the bottom plate keeps any food, oil etc contained. It's very easy to wipe clean the plates when cooled, the top plate being the easiest, and due to its simple straight ribbed plate shape no small spaces for food to get stuck.
Whilst this is an excellent sandwich toaster it isn't perfect, which is why it hasn't got top marks. The catch to lock the plates for storage is not great I wouldn't rely on it holding it carrying about as its easily un-hooks. The cable doesn't store away easy and it's a tight squeeze to fit under the hooks at the bottom. And finally whilst the plates are easy to clean a big improvement would be if the bottom plate could be removed for rinsing.
I picked mine up for £29.99 from Debenhams in an offer, they tend to retail about £40 but worth shopping around. So not cheap but Ive had mine for 4 years now and still works. I guess it depends on how much use you would get out of it but I use this more than the triangle breville maker mainly due to ease of cleaning and speed.
Ribbed grill plates for the creation of authentic Italian style sandwiches / Non-stick coated cooking plates for easy cleaning / Cool touch handles / Short name: Kenwood SM606