Nostalgic nosh: fun times with my new toasted sandwich maker

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

You remember the toasted sandwich right? Of course you do. Didn’t every household have one in the 90s? That first delicious bite when the molten insides of the crispy creation are too hot to palate. When I was at school, every time we had a ‘charity effort’ or a ‘mini enterprise’ business exercise we’d bust out the greasy, sticky toasted sandwich maker and get buttering. Though back then we probably used a big dirty tub of marge rather than actual butter. We’d charge 50p or a pound for one of the hot snacks and make a tidy sum peddling soggy, misshapen sandwiches to our peers.

The toasted sandwich days: me (and some pigeons) in the 90s

You couldn’t fault our creativity though – we didn’t just stick to packets of plastic cheese and pre-sliced ham, we’d have a go at such ingenious combos as Nutella with banana or even baked beans and Marmite. I remember the queue winding around the side of the drama studio as I frantically pushed down on the top of the sizzling, steaming machine, trying to hurry it along, scraping cheesy detritus from the maker’s hot plates as I went.

At uni, the communal toasted sandwich maker was the go-to gadget on returning from a drunken night out, when there was passably fresh bread available, or we’d run out of Super Noodles. But I don’t think I’ve used a proper old style toasted sandwich maker since then. Lately I’ve seen poshed up versions of the humble toastie appearing on certain restaurant menus. Anyone tried the delicious, mammoth Reuben on rye at Mishkins? It’s a toastie at heart – albeit one with Swiss cheese and sauerkraut.

So you’ll understand my delight when I was sent a shiny new Waring ‘deep fill’ sandwich maker, and an accompanying press release declaring the “return of the toastie”. According to the bumph, “This household favourite has been brought right up to date. This is no ordinary sandwich maker, with the extra deep plates you can also make omelettes and easy fruit turnovers as a sweet treat.” I’m not sure why anyone would want to attempt making an omelette in a toastie maker (any of you crazy cats tried that?) but as anyone who knows me will be aware, any vehicle for cheese is okay with me.

My toastie maker

This weekend, feeling not altogether un-hungover, I bought myself a packet of ham, loaf of sliced white bread and some Gruyère and tomatoes from the Continental Deli in Brixton. And I set about making toasties. Now having not used a toasted sandwich machine for over five years, I’m not expert, but this did a pretty good job (see below) – and toasties are ideal hangover food. My only regret is that I think I could have taken more advantage of this machine’s ‘deep fill’ status and pack in a bit more cheese. But you know, we’re living in austere times!

Ham and gruyere toastie

Ham, gruyere and tomato toastie with a glug of Tobasco

3 Responses to “Nostalgic nosh: fun times with my new toasted sandwich maker”
  1. Ham, gruyere and tomato really is the perfect combination! In the 90s I had a “deep fill” jaffle maker (jaffle= Australian for toastie) and the triumph was using ready-rolled puff pastry and jam for turnovers.

  2. shuhanlee says:

    omg this is so old-school I love it! haha! I remember having this charity food sale thing in school, and my friends and I basically made this toastie bar, with pick-your-own meats/veg and cheese and bread and one of those awesome sandwich makers!

  3. I used to eat so many toasties in the north in the 90s – they were so gross, yet so good filled with rubber cheese and wet packet ham. You’re modern day affair looks great!

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: