* Prices may differ from that shown
This is a glossy plastic white toaster that takes two slices of bread at the same time. Some of the useful features are 7 levels of browning, a removable crumb tray and defrost function. It uses 850 watts of power and the dimensions are as follows Height 18.2 cm, Width 27.5 cm and a depth of 19 cm, which i would say is an average size for a 2 slice toaster.
I don't find this a very stylish toaster and certainly does not make any sort of statement, and i usually like the kitchen appliances that sit on my counter top to be a bit more stylish and usually stainless steel. I personally don't like the silver plastic around the knobs and buttons, to me it just looks like they tried to make some effort in the style department, but failed.
The toaster has all the basic functions that one would expect of a toaster, including a very useful defrost function which is perfect if you run out of bread and need grab some slices form the freezer. My husband made great use of the reheat function which allows you to warm the toast back up again without it burning!
The different toast settings also makes it easy to toast the bread to everyone's personal tastes - i like mine barely brown where as my husband likes it almost burnt!
The built is cord storage was useful when we were transporting the toaster and the removable crumb tray made it easy enough to clean. Although i am not a fan of white plastic goods on display on my kitchen work surfaces it was functional and also kept reasonably cool whilst in use.
I have found this toaster to be great value for money. I was looking for a cheap toaster to take away on a caravan holiday that didn't have one. My children love toast in the morning! I went for one in the Russell Hobbs brand as i have always found this brand to be reliable. I paid about £15 for this toaster just under 18 months ago.
***Would i buy this again?***
For the useage that i required it for, a cheap toaster to take on holiday then yes i would buy this toaster again. If someone were to ask if i recommend it as their primary toaster, i would say that if they like how it looks and are after a cheapish but very functional toaster then they cant go wrong with this toaster.
During my adult life I have had the misfortune of having to buy more than one of certain kitchen items due to the way that they always seem to break on me a day or so after the free warranty has just expired.
The main kitchen items that I am always having to replace are kettle and toasters, and it is the latter of those types of items that I am going to tell you about today, a toaster that I owned a while back but, as per usual, I no longer use due to the fact that the warranty expired and the little microchip that is hidden somewhere inside the toaster sent the order for the little machine to go into 'end of warranty' self destruct mode, which it did.
The toaster that I am talking about is from a well known, and very reputable company called Russell Hobbs, whose kitchen appliances I have had the honour, and sometimes pleasure, with the actual full name of the toaster being the Russell Hobbs 18541 Breakfast Collection Toaster.
* So what does this toaster look like...?
It's made of solid silver casing with a 22 carat gold trim and an array of brilliant cut brown diamonds embedded throughout.
NO, it's not really but I got your attention, (although I bet there is a toaster like that out there that the like of Posh spice has in her kitchen... only she still thinks it's new style worktop mirror and is afraid to go near in case she falls into the slots in the top and is never seen again).
Seriously though, this toaster is a little less spectacular than that. It has a lovely white plastic casing that is nice and curvy on all corners. On the top there are two slots that are wide enough for your normal slices of bread, even accommodating thicker things such as buns, crumpets and other toastable things too.
On the front, to the lower right as you look at it, there is the simple to use and even simpler to understand, control panel. Then, on the right side, as we're still looking at it from the front, we have the slider that gets the bread down into the element section of this toaster.
* What about this control panel then..?
As I said, they are easy to use as there are no unnecessary dials and button to confuse anyone, (and I, for one, can get confused quite easily these days),
There is the dial which gives you the choice of how brown you want you bread, being from 1, which is barely touched and is really still bread that is slightly warm, to 7 which is going to burn most bread and make it as black as a bailiffs heart. Each number setting is really a timer which keep the slider down until the time is reached, then it pops out of the toaster and onto your plate... although you do have to take it out of the toaster and put it on your plate.
The other controls, which are to the right of the dial, are, from the top, the cancel button, which pops out the toast when you want it too. Then there's the warm up button, which simply reheats up the bread-slash-toast if you forget it it there on the plate and it goes cold. Then there's the defrost button which, as the name suggests, defrost frozen bread and slowly makes it onto the perfect slice of toast.
Each of these buttons has a little light at the side of them to let you know which button has been pressed and is in use.
And that's the controls, which, as I said, are simple to understand and so easy to use.
* What about using this toaster...?
This is like any other toaster when it comes to making toast. You simply put in a couple of pieces of bread into the slots on the top then slide the arm on the side right down until it locks into position. It will only lock into position when there is electricity so make sure that you have plugged it into the mains.
Anyway, once the slider has locked into position you then wait for the toast to brown, which may take a minute or more, depending on what setting you have chosen to turn the dial too.
* And the cleaning of this toaster..?
It is easy to do so, although I don't recommend trying to clean it in a dishwasher or a bowl of soapy water. All you have to do to get clean it is to empty the crumb tray, then, if you want to, turn the toaster over so that the crumbs that are lodge in the slots themselves can drop into a bin, maybe give it a little shake as well, (the toaster not the bin). Then, once you're happy with the clearing of the crumbs, you can then simply wipe over the outside casing with a moist cloth, being careful not to get any excess water near the elements.
And that's it' that's how easy it is to keep clean. And if you make sure the crumb tray stays as clear of crumbs as possible then there's less chance of the smoke alarms going off in your house.
* Is there anything else that's worth mentioning about this toaster..?
Let me see. Yes, there are a couple of things to mention, such as this does have what is called in the toasting world, an 'extra lift' function which, as the name states, give you the chance to give a little extra lift to your freshly toasted hot cross bun, or similar smaller toasted
And there's the fact that it comes with a bun warmer... (yes, bun with an 'n' not an 'm', so don't be thinking that it could come in handy for keeping your rear end warm).
This buN warmer is basically a little 'rack' device that rests on the top to the toaster, above the slots, so that you can rest buns on the rack in order to keep them warm. This can be done with either empty slots or even whilst you toast some more bread. Either way the rack is sat high enough so that when the toast pops up it doesn't whack into the bottom of the rack, sending buns and bread all over the place.
* So what do I think about this toaster then..?
Well, it's a toaster that toasts bread and, at first, it did a great job in doing exactly what it was supposed to do, doing it to perfection for quite some time.
Sadly though, after a while, and no surprise to me at all, it began to fail me which left me unhappy with the toasting results at the end of the day.
As I said, when it worked it worked well. Even though it only has two slots, which makes it not so handy if you have a large family that loves eating toast, (and when I say large I don't mean big and fat, like Pavarotti or Venessa, I mean more a family with a few member in it.
To be honest you would think that only being able to toast two slices at once can be time consuming, but with its 850watt of power heating the elements it doesn't take long to get the sides of the bread as brown as you want them.
As for the depth of the toast slots. Well, these aren't the deepest by a long shot and it does struggle to completely toast certain types of bread, (Warburton's is one of those larger sliced bread that are a wee bit too tall for this toaster), so it is a chose of either having the top coupe of inch or so of toast un-toasted or flipping the semi toasted toast over so that it slightly toasts the ends whilst heavily toasting the central section. Me, personally, I often opted for the first and even slice off the top of the slice of bread before putting it into the toasting slots. That way I got a perfect piece of browned toast without any white tops to spoil my toast eating experience.
The single crumb tray can hold a good amount of bread crumbs but it does need emptying every other toasting experience or you will end up with a lot of crumbs on the floor and worktops when you're moving the toaster.
Then, after a while, in fact, well passed the usually warranty had expired, the toaster began to do what all my toasters do at the end of the day. The elements decided to live in a world of there own, some sections working when they chose to whilst others sitting on their behinds doing absolutely nothing at all, (a little like chavs on the local council estate...). This is when I chose to throw the toaster into the recycling world at the local refuge centre, previously known as the local tip as there's nothing worse than having a piece of toast that is only browned in a few places.
* So how much did this toaster cost then..?
I think it cost me about £15.00 to £20.00 and, after a bit of a search online, the price is still about the same.
* Is it worth the money..?
I would have to say yes, it was worth the money as it made lots and lots of toast for my family and myself, with each piece being just as brown as I wanted it. Sadly though, as per usual with me and toasters, once the elements began to fail it just didn't make toast as I liked it, which resulted in me having a tantrum when I either ended up with toast as black as a lump of coal or as white as a snow flake, sometimes even half and half or even worse, patchy shades of white, brown and black... but never as I wanted it, although it did prove that my smoke alarm was still working.
At the end of the day I think I got my monies worth out of this toaster before it went to the big electrical resting place in sky... commonly known as the tip.
850 watts / 2 slices / 7 toast settings / Cancel function / Defrost function / Reheat function / Variable browning / Removable crumb tray / Non-slip feet / Cord storage / Manufacturer's 2 year guarantee / EAN/MPN/UPC/ISBN: 4008496728718 / By Russell Hobbs / Short name: Russell Hobbs 18541