A good sandwich toaster will take you to cheese toastie bliss. Read our review of the multipurpose Tefal snack collection, a machine that is compatible with 16 different grill plates.
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Tefal snack collection
Pros: Solid and effective machine
Cons: Poor instructions, 'collection' only comes with two plates as standard
The Tefal snack collection aims to single-handedly produce a range of snacks that would normally require several different machines (or, if you’re a traditionalist, frying pans, ovens and grills). It comes complete with plates for triangular sandwiches and waffles and you can buy up to 14 others, including ones to make pancakes, donuts, paninis and turnovers. If this product was in a school yearbook, it would be a shoe-in for 'most potential'.
The machine is very solid, which makes the rather flimsy instructions particularly disappointing. Most of the instructions are in the form of diagrams, which might or might not work well, depending how easy you find these to follow. Some people certainly prefer written instructions.
The waffle and sandwich plates that come with the machine are individually packaged in boxes reminiscent of old-fashioned videotape cases. They look lovely and a collection would look great on a shelf, but the boxes are quite thick, which might be a problem for those short of space.
Each box also contains a recipe booklet, which looks impressive until you realise it’s the same four recipes in around 30 languages. Still, the recipes, which for the triangular sandwich plates include croque monsieur and banana & chocolate brioche sandwiches, are a good starting point.
Unusually, this machine has an 'on' switch – most simply work when you plug them in – and it took four minutes and 20 seconds to preheat, slightly speedier than the five minutes given in the instructions. The green light switched on when it was ready.
Like most of the machines, you need to butter the outside of the bread when making your sarnie. We made a thick cheese & tomato toastie, and the machine coped easily with this, although the bread itself (standard supermarket bread) was a tiny bit too big for the plates. It just meant that our single sarnie lapped over to the adjacent plate, so it wasn’t quite as neat as it might have been otherwise. There was no instruction for how long to cook it for, but it was brown, crisp and well sealed after four minutes.
We then swapped to the waffle plates, putting the sandwich plates in the dishwasher for easy cleaning. The instructions said to just put one ladleful of mixture in, which resulted in waffles which were a bit thin. We tried it with more of the mixture and some leaked out the sides. It’s definitely a case of trial and error to get it just right. The waffles were cooked through and brown after three minutes, and were very crispy.
Multi-functional: yes (sandwich and waffle plates included, others available to buy)
Number of sandwiches: two
Removable plates: yes
Dishwasher proof: yes
Recipe book: yes, included with each plate
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This review was last updated in June 2019. If you have any questions, suggestions for future reviews or spot anything that has changed in price or availability, please get in touch at firstname.lastname@example.org.