I bought the Aldi sandwich toaster the other day because I had previously purchased a different one (see other review) from elsewhere and it turned out the plates were too large. So whilst perusing the special offers and seeing aldi were doing a sandwich toaster for 7.99 I thought what the heck it’s cheap enough and grabbed hold of one.
The objective is to get a toaster which is quick to set up, easy to clean, makes great sandwiches and is large enough to make two toasted sandwich portions at once. I really am not that interested in making 4, although I can see the appeal from a family perspective. No – the Aldi toaster is fine for my needs. My recipe is very simplistic aswell, the straight forward cheese n onion toastie on warburtons sliced white bread (thin that is). Unpacking the Aldi sandwich toaster revealed it to be a compact case with a thick strong electrical cable. It is made of plastic and presented with very glossy black coating. Hinged at the rear like other toasters, it folds over the sandwiches and clamps down on them applying pressure to seal the bread, the lid is prevented from popping back up with a flip down catch on the handle at the front.
To use the Aldi sandwich toaster you plug it in, wait for it to get hot, stick your raw food in and close the lid. There is no timer (this is normal for toastie makers) so I keep my eye on how long the sandwich has been in for by using the clock countdown on the oven which beeps when finished. The sandwich making gadget steams away for about 7 minutes in my case (cooking times vary – naturally) and can be opened periodically to check progress. After the 7 minutes is up, I used a couple of wooden spatulas to remove the sandwiches and let them cool off a bit before tucking in.
Here is how my first attempt turned out.
I think most people would agree that the above shows what a mess I made of my first attempt with the sandwich toaster. Let me explain why it looks so bad, and how I plan to get around this awful disaster!
The first thing I did when preparing the filling for the sandwich was a cardinal mistake for toasted sandwich makers everywhere – I cut off the top and bottom crusts. Why did I do this? Because I am stupid and I thought that the seal in the bread was made by the flat area of the heated plates – immediately round the indentend part. Well it clearly isn’t! The seal is made by the very thin raised areas which practically touch each other when the lid is closed. Below I have drawn in green the sealing parts of the heated plate – when making your sandwich ensure that the bread lies over the top of these – not within them. Naturally, because the bread was now too small for the toaster, the cheese melted and ran out all over the show because there was no way for the top and bottom slices to seal.
It doesn’t matter really if there is a little bit of breadcrust sticking out, just as long as the raised parts are covered. You may ask yourself about the middle part – there is only one raised part. Well if the outer rectangle is sealed as you can see where it would be in my review photograph above, then there is no where for the filling to leak to – other than the opposite sandwich so you have nothing to worry about.
Now the brand name for this impressive little cooker is “ambiano” although looking at the writing I suppose it could say amblano – so if you’re in Aldi this weekend and fancy re-living the past with a good old cheese toasty, I would say at the low price they are offering it at, you can’t really go wrong with this.
I think a cable tidy winding on the back would have been nice, but once again, for the money this is excellent value and a great little addition to the kitchen. As an afterthought – there are lights on it which indicate when it is hot enough to cook on, and also when power is connected.