* Prices may differ from that shown
The family is partial to the occasional toastie. When it came to replacing our previous model after years of sterling service, I wanted something simple, compact and was only looking for a model that produced two straightforward sandwiches. The Russell Hobbs 17936 Sandwich Toaster seemed to fit the bill.
The toaster comes with clear instructions on how to use it together with some interesting filling suggestions (peaches and custard anyone?).
There is clear power-on light which glows red as soon as the sandwich toaster is plugged in and the power switched on. The ready green light glows as soon as the toaster comes up to the right temperature.
To make the toasties you are advised to use a dessertspoon of filling per sandwich. Too much will ooze out. The bread (medium sliced recommended) needs to get cut to overlap the plates by 0.5 cm all round. You are also advised not to use low fat spreads as they may burn and damage the non-stick surfaces. When the toasties are ready to go (buttered side out), you simply place on the bottom cooking plate and close the lid, squeezing the handles together and secure with the locking latch. The sandwiches take between 2 and 4 minutes to toast.
So that’s the theory. In practice, the results are so so. There’s a lot of wastage as you need to cut the bread to size and the latch on the handle sare quite fiddly. Even using a small amount, the filling always oozes out in the top left hand corner.
The sandwich does come out in a pretty shape – two well defined triangles. However even after cooking for more than 4 minutes, the bread doesn’t go a lovely crispy gold colour that my old machine used to produce. The sandwiches certainly taste better than they look (which is just as well) but in my opinion the bread is a little on the soggy side.
~~Care and maintenance~~
The plates aren’t removable which I thought would make cleaning difficult but one of the plus points of this machine is that the non stick surfaces really do appear to be non stick. Even when the cheese has leaked out of the sandwich, the plates wipe clean easily with a damp cloth or sponge.
£19.99 is the RRP but the toaster is widely available from other stores and supermarkets at a lot less.
On the positive, the toaster is very reasonably priced, is easy to clean and is nice and compact. On the negative, I’ve yet to make a toastie where there’s been no leakage and the finished result looks anaemic.
The hungry horde have devoured the sandwiches greedily and not commented on what I think are rather inferior looking sandwiches. So although in terms of my customers, the sandwiches this toaster produces get the thumbs up, for me the overall performance is distinctly average.
I don't like to review things I haven't had for long as I wouldn't be able to comment on it's longevity, however when something is rubbish and breaks quickly then I think it's fine to write an early review.
I don't have much luck with toasted Sandwich Makers, I'm yet to find one that doesn't actually break in some way within months. The Russell Hobbs one I bought a few weeks ago is a record breaker. Like I say I haven't had it long and it's already lost it's non stick. The Toastie Maker was £15 in the CO OP a place I don't normally go in.
The machine comes in a posh mainly black box, inside the box you get the toastie maker and the instruction leaflet. I don't normally read these things but because of my track record with non stick thought I'd better had. It does actually have some do's and don'ts regarding caring for the non stick that I didn't know about (some which are obvious for example: don't use knifes etc on the plates and wipe with a soft cloth) such as don't over cook or use low fat spread as this can burn, resulting in burnt plates and damage to the non stick. I've been careful this time when making my sandwiches but have still had problems.......
The Sandwich Maker looks good, better quality than most I've had. It's black with a stainless steel top. There's a green and red light to tell you when it's ready. It just plugs straight in the wall to switch on- there's no on off button or temperature control. It's neat but doesn't look that small, but when I opened it up I was surprised and disappointed at how small the sandwich plates actually are. It looks smaller than my broken Tesco Value one, but I've just measured them side by side and they're the same. I'd hoped the plate area would be bigger but it's not. I don't know why they make these things so small, they don't fit normal sized bread so the slice's need to be cut down by atleast and inch. Cheap value bread slice's fit better but it's still a squeeze to cook two butties at a time; most of the time I cook one sideways on.
It takes no time at all to heat up, about the time it takes me to make up the sandwich. The sandwich needs to be placed in the machine butter side up to help prevent sticking and to give a crispy texture. The lid is then forced down over the sandwich and clipped in place; I like to open it now and again to let any steam out otherwise the toastie can be a little soggy. The sandwich is cooked in about 6 mins so quick enough. Care needs to be taken not to over stuff with filling as it just oozes out and more often than not out of the back making it difficult to clean later. Talking of cleaning, I find all of these machine's a pain to clean (the plates have corners and crevices in order to seal and shape the sandwich) this model is no different.
The first few uses with this left me very impressed, the sandwiches came out really nice. They just lifted off the plates with ease. However with a bit more use they started getting more difficult to lift out. On closer inspection I see the black non stick is picking off, not rubbing off or being scraped off by an implement as I haven't used one; it's lifting off on it's own.......there are 4 bare metal areas showing, one being an inch long sliver.
I'm taking this back this week for a refund..........
Amazon are currently selling this sandwich maker for £18.50, the Tesco website site has it priced at £20, Asda have it for sale at a low price of £11.99, and http://www.dunelm-mill.com have it for sale at an even lower price of £10.49. The price for this item does vary, so it is worth looking around online if you are interested.
I purchased mine a good few years ago, therefore I can't quite remember how much I bought it for, but I am pretty sure I wouldn't have paid more than £20 for the Russell Hobbs Sandwich Maker.
* Classic brushed stainless steel and black styling
* Cuts and seals two rounds of sandwiches
* Non-stick plates
* Handle with locking clip
* Stand upright feature
* One size available in W 23cm (9") x L 20cm (8") x H 6cm (2")
* Wattage 700 watts
The sandwich maker has a black and silver coloured finish and measures approx 6cm in height, 23cm wide, and 20cm in length. It has a stainless steel material finish at the centre body of the appliance and black plastic handles, back, sides and underside. On the stainless steel surface there is a red and green light indicator which indicates power and ready lights. The handle has a plastic seal that can be lifted to open and reveal the four metal plates designed for both side of bread for two sandwiches.
The sandwich maker is compact in size and therefore easy to store in small cupboards, as well as being able to keep it on the kitchen worktop without it taking up much space, plus it looks reasonably stylish with its stainless steel silver and black finish.
It is very easy to step up and operate, simply plug in the power adapter into an available power source and then wait for it to heat up. The red light indicator will light up when the power is switched on, and the green light will light up when the sandwhich maker is hot enough to make toasties. I found it took only a couple of minutes to heat up, which was impressive.
To open simply flip open the handle seal and then you are greeted with four metal plates, one for each slice of bread. I found that I did struggle fitting an average slice of bread into the toaster, so in order to fit them in properly I had to remove the crusts, which I was not happy about as I do love crispy crusts. I also had to further trim the slices of bread down, which meant I had to waste quite a lot of bread just to be able to fit each slice in.
I ensured the sides touching the plates were reasonably coasted with margarine to reduce the chances of it sticking to the plates. I then added the filling, as I do love cheese and onion sandwich toasties I placed slices of evenly cut cheese onto the left and right sides of bread and then sprinkled slices of onion and pepper, I then closed the lid and to let it cook.
After about 7--8 minutes the toasties were ready, however when I opened the appliance I saw that most of the cheese filling had melted but spilled out into the sides which was quite disappointing. The second problem was getting the sandwiches out, despite as being advertised as having non stick plates and coasting the slices with lots of margarine, the sandwiches were quite hard to remove without it breaking into pieces. Although the toasties were golden brown in colour and the contents melted and cooked well, the end product on my plate was torn up sandwiches which looked quite messy.
It did taste nice, but the effort involved to removed the stuck sandwiches and the cheese from the sides was quite time consuming, it took me a good 5 minutes to remove the messed up sandwiches and the dried up cheese left on the sides. This made the cleaning process a little harder than I would have liked, however I found after a 5 minute soak it was easier to scrub free the dried stuck hard cheese and crumbs.
Overall I was quite disappointed with this Russell Hobbs Sandwich Maker and expected better from such a well reputable brand. Overall to much hassle and wasted food for it warrant a recommendation and therefore I rate this product a 1/5.
I have had this toasted sandwich maker for well over 6 years, and it is still working brilliantly and making great toasties!
It features the capacity to make two toasted sandwiches at once (4 pieces of bread in total) and has deep plates so you can put quite a lot of fillings into your sandwiches.
It has a simple to use system of two lights, and on light and a ready light. The ready light will switch off when its hot enough to put your sandwiches in, and then come back on when they're ready. It heats up quite quickly, in roughly 1-2 minutes. The sandwiches then take about 3-4 minutes to make or less.
When making cheese toasties, sometimes the cheese leaks out the side or onto the work surface. But that might just be because I use too much cheese! It can make a bit of a mess sometimes but its reasonably easy to clean with a scourer.
The design is simple but really classy- the silver and black goes great with my kitchen and I leave it out on the counter all the time. Because it's so compact, its easy to store and can stand upright to save space, but even leaving it flat on the surface it doesn't take up much space. The cord can also be wrapped around the bottom to save even more space.
For the price it's an absolute bargain, and seeing as I have used it without problems for 6 years, it is definitely a durable and long lasting toastie maker. I would recommend it to anyone
The good old faithful sandwich toaster. This is something that lurks in the back of your bottom kitchen cupboard that you've had for years and have forgotten all about. Well I say dust it off and bring back the toastie sarnies!!! After all, very little effort is required to make this yummy lunches.
I've seen the price of these applicances drop considerably over the years, and I think we've gotten through about 4 of them over a period of 17 years now.
This sandwich maker comes in a well packaged box that include instructions, not that you really need them. The overall design is fairly attractive and sports a polished steel outter case. It will make 2 rounds of sarnies in the non-stick plates.
Simply the the appliance on and the red light appears, now wait a few minutes for the green one to pop on and then you're ready to go. I always spray the four plates with a low cal sunflower oil. If I have run out then I just simply butter one side of the bread and ENSURE that you plate the butter side bread facing ALL plates. If you don't do this you'll get in a right mess when you try to remove the sarnies.
As for what to put in the sandwiches, I always have cheese, sometimes I may add a thin slice of hand and thinly sliced tomatoes. Other fillings can include Branston pickle, a few baked beans, chutney ... the list is endless. But BECAREFUL if you over fill the sandwiches it'll all run out the back.
I usually toast the sarnies for about 2 minutes and they come out all golden brown. Take care on your first bit as the melted cheese WILL burn your mouth, I always let them cool for about a minute or 2 before scoffing commences.
Power consumption is a little on the worrying side at 700w, but then I guess that's it's only on for a few minutes. Besides, you wont get the same effect by putting the sandwiches under the grill to toast. It's ok to clean, not the easiest in the world I have to admit, but then there's no pain no gain.
Go on.. treat yourself to a scrummy lunch with a bit of salde on the side.
Purchased from Currys for £12.99
I started off with a value sandwich maker and then I decided to upgrade to this one for around five pounds more.
The sandwich maker is easy to use. You simply plug it in and straight away it starts to warm up. You slice your sandwich into four triangles and place them inside the grooves that are situated inside the sandwich maker. The inside plates are non stick so you don't have to worry about the bread sticking to the plates. You place your filling into the sandwich, stick your sandwich in the grooves and close the sandwich maker. You can then lock the sandwich maker whilst it is in use, this helps the sandwiches to become sizzling hot and even more yummy! Plus it helps to secure the appliance itself.
During use BOTH the green and red lights remain on, however once the red light has gone out you can take your toasties out of the sandwich maker. The toasties are gorgeous, really tasty and really yummy. The bread toasts really well and it's very rare that the fillings leak from the sandwiches. The toasties are perfect and it's great for snacks such as cheese on toast as the cheese really does melt, becoming all yummy and gooey.
The sandwich maker is easy to clean and very easy to maintain. It's more durable compared to the cheaper one that I had before, plus the design is nice and the colour fits in with the rest of my kitchen appliances.
This sandwich maker, or toastie machine (what I like to call it), came with the flat that I am renting right now. I have never been very fond of toasties since they remind me too much of my teenage years in the boarding school, but I do use it sometimes when I am craving melted cheese and ham.
The machine is easy enough to use. It consists of 2 squares, one for each sandwich, and you simply close the two plates together and shut it with the clip, turn it on and wait until the red light goes off - and viola, sizzling hot toastie with melted cheese and ham available at your disposal.
I find that this machine makes my toasties quite fast, about 3 or 4 minutes (but I've never timed it). However, I must say that I do find the size of the sandwich plate a little too small. My bread never fits it, and every time I have had to cut the edges off - even then, it is sometimes still too big for the plate. I guess this depends on the type of bread you buy - I believe there are smaller bread loaf, but I shouldn't think you have to buy smaller bread just because you want to use the toastie machine, right?
This being said, I am never disappointed with the toasties that this machine produces. I mainly use it to make ham and cheese toasties. The filling is always thoroughly heated and the cheese deliciously melted; the outside is never burnt - in fact, if I follow the timer in built in the machine, I always find my bread on the soggy side. It is fine for me though, because I don't like bread too toasted, but I can see that this may be a problem with some people who like their bread a certain way. The sandwich never sticks to the plate, so I don't have to worry too much about cleaning it every time after I use it either.
As I said earlier, I didn't buy this machine. A quick search on amazon and I find this at £17.87 on amazon. Quite cheap, I would say, and I don't know the price of competing toastie machines so I can't really judge whether this is good for value or not. I guess that there would be better sandwich makers out there, perhaps ones that can allow you to make a bigger sandwich and probably with more functions... But for a simple sandwich maker and nothing else, this one does the job for me.
I am a big lover of the toasted sandwich. But I admit it is a bit of a fad. Months can go by before I start eating them again and then I can go for weeks before I start getting bored of them again and file away my Toastie-maker for another distant rainy day.
When my trusty Breville upped and died on me recently, I pulled it out of the cupboard only to discover it had retired from many years of service gracefully after months of dis-use, it is fair to say I was disappointed. Though I wouldn't say I used it a lot, still it has always been there when I got the craving for a toasted savoury snack. Until now.....
Never fear, I thought, I can just buy a replacement......
Quite why I chose this Morphy Richards model over another Breville, I am not entirely sure. Maybe it had much to do with the sci-fi, futuristic look of the thing like something of another age. But just as it is true what they say about not judging a book by its cover, so too should you not judge a kitchen appliance by its appearance!
For starters, and I am not alone in this I have discovered since by any means, it doesn't take a standard sized slice of bread. Only by removing the crusts and a bit of strategic trimming could I get this to fit in the black plates it cooks upon. Also you cannot get too much filling in your sandwich or the lid refuses to shut completely. Annoying? Just a tad. But not if you like a toastie-lite!
The second issue I have with this, (or the third perhaps ~ who's counting after all?) is that it seems to allow too much steam to formulate during the cooking process! A real Toastie should be hot, crisp and have that little bit of crunch. Every time I have used this paticular Toastie-maker, my sandwiches have come out rather...well, limp and soggy ids the best description and not at all what I might expect from a proper Toastie!
Am I impressed with this product? I ask you ~ does it sound like it? Thankfully I have managed to sell this to some gullible fool/ idiot/ mug...ahem, I mean bidder on Ebay, almost getting back the money I paid for it because it was hardly used and in box. But I think it only fair to point out to anyone whom it concerns that if you are looking for a half-decent Toasted Sandwich maker then this definetely isn't it!
There is a reason the name Breville is synonymouus with the classic and now retro Toasted Sandwich maker and that is because they know what they are doing. With this product, Morphy Richards appear to have lost the plot a little and failed to deliver! And that is a shame because normally they are usually regarded as a name you can trust.
Not with this product, they're not!
We love having toasted sandwiches so buying a machine rather than using those little toasty bags seemed worthwhile. We picked the Russell Hobbs 17936 as it was only £14.99 from Argos, and we weren't looking to spend too much.
The 17936 Sandwich Maker will make 2 rounds of toasted sandwich. By placing an sandwich on the non stick plates and locking the lid down. The sandwich maker has a lid that opens up for you to pop in your sarnies, and then you close it to toast them. When you close it, there is a locking latch to ensure the sandwich maker presses on each side of your toastie. It gets hot enough to use in a lengthy 5 minutes I find and this is shown by a light indicator. It will toast your sandwiches in about 5 minutes depending how lightly toasted you prefer them. This is really slow so using the sandwich bags are loads quicker
The design of the 17936 is compact at only 235 mm long x 210 wide and just 80 mm high so it stashes in your cupboards when not in use easily. It has a brushed stainless steel and black design which is stylish and modern. The non-stick plates are easy to clean, and we find that they only need a wipe as the non-stick is really good.
The toasties come out with the fillings hot but the degree of toastiness (not a word I know but it seems ideal for the description) can vary each time you use it. Sometimes you'll get golden toasties in just 4 minutes and other times they will be cremated in 4 minutes.
You also have to cut the crusts of larger loaves to fit the sandwiches in which I find a waste of bread and it does mean that your toasties are small. The plates could do with being bigger in this instance. And it would be handy to have settings on the toastie maker like you do on a toaster to set how toasted you want the sandwich. A light to indicate when the sandwiches are done would also be a good addition.
For the bargain price of £15.00, and I have seen it since on Amazon for just £13.99, it is a solid product. But as you are only paying a small amount for it, it is very basic, don't expect multiple settings and a quick turnaround!
We quite like eating toasted sandwiches in our house. The machine we did own was a hand me down from one of my husband's relatives. He was given it when he went to university in 1998, and it had been well used before we got it. Now we are a bigger family, our needs were for a bigger and more efficient machine to make meal times a bit speedier if we all wanted a toasted sandwich.
This machine was chosen for us as a gift, so it is not something we chose for ourselves. On opening the box, we were delighted with this machine. It is a nice modern looking machine, and is not that much bigger than the machine we had, although this one is big enough to make 2 toasted sandwiches at once. It is roughly 23cm wide by 21cm, and about 7cm in height at its highest point. It stands on 2 legs at the front, and has a plastic section to the rear of the machine to coil the cable round when not in use, so it sits slightly raised off the bench on these three pieces.
The cable is about 1m in length, so we don't have to be right next to the plug socket to use it, and it can be kept well out of the way of the machine when in use, as that steel surface can get pretty hot to touch.
On top of the machine, there are 2 lights. The red one comes on straight away when it is plugged in. The green one lets you know the machine is hot enough to use to make your toasted sandwich.
There is only really one way to make a toasted sandwich, by using spread or butter on the outside of the bread, before putting the filling of your choice into the middle. My preference is for something cheesey, which will melt and turn very gooey inside the sandwich. The booklet that came with the machine had a few sweet and savoury sandwich option recipes, so that was useful to give some ideas of things we might try.
The manual suggested only using a tablespoon of your filling, otherwise you are likely to lose the filling out of your sandwich and find it running out through the back of the toaster. I find this happens to me most times I use this sandwich toaster, but it is hard to judge how much sliced cheese is equivalent to one tablespoon.
The recommended cooking time for this machine is 3-4 minutes. I find this is a gross underestimate. I made myself lunch with this machine yesterday. Just a plain cheese toastie. I let the machine warm up before use. It was on for nearly 5 minutes while I prepared the bread and sorted my son out. I then put my sandwich in.
After 4 minutes I checked my sandwich. The outer surface of the bread was starting to look a little golden, but the bread was still fairly soggy. Even the outer parts of the sandwich were only a little crispy. I then left it another couple of minutes. The outer section was now crisper, but the inside was still pretty soggy. In fact, it took nearer 10 minutes till the middle section of the sandwich surface could be described as toasted, but by this time, the outer surface was very crisp, and had a taste of being close to burning. I was glad I didn't have bad teeth, as it was very crunchy as well by this stage and tough to chew.
While this machine looks pretty stylish and comes from what I consider to be a decent brand, it doesn't make the toasted sandwiches as well as our old machine. This is a real shame. It takes longer than you think to get a passable sandwich, with the only consolation being because it is a double machine, it still takes the same length of time to make 2 toasted sandwiches as it did with 2 uses of the single toastie machine we had.
One advantage that this machine does appear to have is that although most bread you can buy in the shop is too big for the machine, and you are supposed to trim the bread before making the sandwich, the machine is such a tight fit when you put the lid down, that the edges just seem to fall off and don't need more than a quick pull to remove them.
Cleaning this is a doddle. A quick wipe with a cloth is all it needs to make it useable again, or ready to put away. It is such a neat machine that it doesn't take up too much bench space or room in the cupboard when not in use.
At about £20, it is not one of the better machines on the market in my opinion. From the way the green light goes on and off all the time when in use, I would suggest that the plates just do not transmit the heat properly into the sandwich, instead a lot of the energy going into the steel lid of the machine making it dangerous to the touch. This means the machine needs to reheat during use, so your food does not get as cooked as it should. I found with our old machine, I needed to let the sandwich filling cool down a bit before eating as steam would escape from the sandwich and leave blisters in my mouth if not careful. With this one, the filling is warm but not scalding. I could eat it straight away.
I personally prefer a crunchier toastie all the way across the outer surface, and I can't seem to achieve that with this particular machine.
Short name: Russell Hobbs 17936