There's never been so much choice when it comes to sandwich types. We have got traditional sandwiches made with sliced bread, paninis, baguettes, bagels and wraps to name a few. A toasted sandwich makes an excellent lunchtime meal but most toastie makers don't cater for all types of bread. The traditional toasted sandwich maker with the dips in it only toasts sliced bread and I tried using my George Foreman but the slanted grill let the melted cheese fall out of the sandwich making a real mess. A solution was required to sort out my sandwich woes and that came in the form of the Breville VST022.
The Panini maker is silver with a black handle and looks like the heavy duty sandwich makers you get in cafes making it a stylish choice on your kitchen surfaces. It has non-stick feet meaning it does not move around when you are using it but it does take up a lot of surface or cupboard space when not in use.
The plates of the sandwich maker are made of non-stick aluminium which is good for a number of reasons. In old style toastie makers you often have to butter the bread on the outside to stop it from sticking to the grill but this is not needed with the Panini press making the sandwiches healthier. The flat surface is easy to wipe clean with a damp cloth once it is cool and even melted cheese comes away without scrubbing. The only downside to a flat surface is you don't get the toasted line pattern like you do on other sandwich makers but that is not important to me.
Using the Panini press is really easy, simply turn it on and the light will come on telling you that it is heating up. After a couple of minutes another light comes on telling you it is ready to use and you lift the top plate up and place the sandwich inside. The floating hinge adapts to the different thicknesses of bread used from standard toasties to fatter paninis but you can't toast sandwiches of different thicknesses at the same time. You can fit in 2 or 3 standard toasties or around 4 paninis at once.
My favourite thing to make on my Panini press is toasted tortilla wraps. Simply fill the wrap down the middle with the food of your choice (my favourite is cheese, onion and tomato but my daughter likes chicken and sweetcorn) and wrap it up tucking in the edges and grill for a few minutes. The wrap always ends up nicely toasted without getting burnt and the filling is lovely and hot making the ideal lunch.
My Breville Panini press is brilliant, much better than a bog standard toastie machine. I have a Breville toasted sandwich maker which used to belong to my grandma and must be more than 20 years old proving that Breville is a good quality brand and so I am hoping the Panini press lives as long. A Panini press is ideal way to make a variety of different lunchtime sandwiches meaning you don't need to be bored with a soggy ham sandwich ever again.
Short name: Breville VST022