How to make the most of your sandwich press or jaffle iron

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Sandwich presses can be used
for more than just sandwiches.

Sandwich presses and jaffle makers are actually two of the most useful appliances (okay, after the food processor, microwave and oven) in your kitchen, and especially in the kitchen at work. And I don’t mean you’ll have death by sandwiches either because you can do so much more with them. I’m about to show you how to get creative and think outside of the box when it comes to utilising your sandwich press. 

Ultimately a sandwich press is just like a fry pan, only its like two fry pans, where one is hinged on top of the other. And if you think about it like a fry pan then a world of options opens up to you beyond the humble sandwich or wrap. You can now sauté, fry, grill and toast anything in a machine built specifically for bread.
Uses for the sandwich press at home 
Burger patties in the sandwich press

  • Meatballs/burger patties: I cook meatballs and burger patties in the sandwich press because both sides are cooked at once and it reduces cooking time. I also used this method a lot when I was learning to cook because I wasn’t any good at frying meatballs and patties on the stove. 
  • Grilled potatoes: this is brilliant! Potatoes made crispy in the sandwich press. Instructions are here.
  • Grill chicken pieces: cover chicken with herbs and spices and grill for a low fat dinner. Or coat them in bread crumbs to make a schnitzel or parmigiana. 
  • Kebab sticks: cook veggies or meat and veggies on sticks as kebabs. These are usually grilled on a bbq, so why not do it on the sandwich press? You’ll need to cook them in batches though and cut all the ingredients to a similar size. 
  • Omelette: though I’d put less egg on the machine than you think or otherwise it’ll run out the sides as it swells and cooks. 
  • Breakfast burritos: roll scrambled eggs in a wrap/tortilla with cheese, spinach, and tomatoes or mushrooms and avocado and you have an amazing brekky made in almost no time. 
Lamb kebabs in the sandwich press – so fast to cook.
Really yummy breakfast burritos – scrambled eggs, avocado and veg.
Uses for the sandwich press at work
  • Warming leftover chicken pieces (which could then go in a wrap or over rice). 
  • Heating vegetable patties (but don’t close the lid cause they’ll squish).
  • Warming leftover pizza (lid open). 
  • Frying/scrambling eggs (lid open – preferably on a sandwich press that isn’t warped so the eggs will stay in the one spot – and yes, I have done this). 
  • Or any of the ideas listed above – just make sure you wash the machine before the next person needs it!
    Uses for a jaffle iron

    Earlier this year I wrote about how Reynold from Masterchef had to use a jaffle iron for a challenge when he’d never used one before. He came up with a creative apple pie dessert using a typical bread based machine. It goes to show that being creative can give you brilliant ideas for recipes that are your own. 
    What if you tried making omelettes in a jaffle iron as well? Wouldn’t triangular pieces of egg just thrill the kids? Or make a unique canapĂ© when friends come over (put a small piece of smoked salmon on the eggs, with a spoon of cream cheese and a caper)?

    Jaffle iron omelettes work – but under fill the triangles as eggs
    expand as they cook, and you don’t want to wipe up overflowing egg.

    How about making waffles in it? My penguin shaped waffle maker (don’t ask) is essentially the same on the inside as a jaffle iron. Here’s a few recipes to give you some inspiration. 
    But after all that, a sandwich press or a jaffle iron are still great options for making toasted sandwiches (and you really can’t go wrong with cheese and tomato). So if you’ve got a hankering for something a little different, check out these recipes (most include meat).

    Whatever you do decided to cook, just don’t store that sandwich press or jaffle iron in the back of the cupboard any more!

    Question: What other meals could you cook in the sandwich press or jaffle iron?

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