Holy moly! What planet have I been living on that I didn’t take this gadget seriously?
Around Christmas it’s not unusual for us to buy a little something for ourselves since there are usually sales everywhere. I’d been wanting a pannini maker for months, but I am loathe to give up any counter space for just any old gadget. When I saw the Cuisinart Griddler at a good price, I decided to do something un-Maria-like and bought it on a hunch.
It had a couple of features I really liked, like removable grill plates that makes it easy to clean. And while it’s not as compact as other pannini makers, I like its weight. It doesn’t feel like a cheap product. It works fast too. I can make two sandwiches for Greg and his stay hot until mine comes off the grill.
It makes exceptional grilled cheese sandwiches. The cheese is all melty and gooey and it has the nicest grill marks on the bread.
We’ve been using denser bread like French bread and ciabatta which makes some really nice, hearty sandwiches. So far we’ve tried turkey, ham, prosciutto, cheese, and veggie sandwiches. The heating element is hot enough that it cooks the vegetables perfectly so no need to prepare them separately. I’m looking forward to the next time I have leftover roast beef in the house.
It’s important not to over stuff the bread, but the sturdier the bread the better it will hold the stuffing. You can grill meat on the open grill, but we haven’t tried that yet.
I have this idea of layering thin slices of apple on white bread, then sprinkling cinnamon and little dabs of butter over the apple before covering it with another slice of bread. I’ll bet it’ll make a good dessert.
Waffles: Greg has been begging for a waffle machine for ages. I’ve refused because I didn’t want an appliance that only did one thing. The Griddler was so impressive, I decided to spring for the waffle plates. Some of the higher end pannini makers come with waffle attachments, but this one did not.
It makes a decent waffle. It doesn’t brown the top as well as the bottom, but Greg is happy with it so I guess we’ll keep it. At least now I won’t have to get those sad puppy dog eyes every time he wants waffles.
Do you have a pannini/sandwich maker? Do you have any suggestions on what else I could try on it?
We’ve been using ours steadily for two weeks now. We’ve been so happy with the sandwiches we’ve been making that sometimes we forego my planned dinner in lieu of a hot sandwich. Much easier on me, that’s for sure. It turned out to be a good ‘house’ gift.
For more gift ideas, don’t forget to check out last week’s Big Christmas List post.