The Fresh Loaf

News & Information for Amateur Bakers and Artisan Bread Enthusiasts

How about Toasters?

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Cliff Johnston's picture
Cliff Johnston

How about Toasters?

We are bombarded on all sides with advertising for all kinds of kitchen gadgets and gear, but the toaster seems to have fallen by the wayside in more ways than one.  Most toasters that we've had in the past 10 years have been, well, how to put this nicely...not very satisfying.  In fact they've been downright disasters.  Not a one has lasted more than a year.  We enjoy our toast, and this is not good.

We have just tossed out our 7th or 8th toaster in 5 years.  The last one was a top of the line GE.  My wife's first comment was that it seemed awefully tinny.  She didn't like it from the get-go.  I should have listened to her and taken it right back.  It failed within 2 months.  I took it back for replacement - no problems;  however, my wife had made her point.  She wanted a toaster that looked and felt solid, not a "wimpy" toaster.  She told me to find a "good one".  She was sick and tired of getting the short end of the stick. 

After much searching on the internet I ended up buying a Krup's 2-slice toaster, model #TT9300 from BigBuyCity on eBay.  I must say here that I've been burned by some Yankee peddlars in the past and had second thoughts about buying from this outfit, but I bit the bullet and went for it.  They are a great outfit to do business with.  I had my new toaster in 5 days, including the weekend!  This is a machine and a half for the kitchen!  The sides are metal castings - no flimsy, stamped metal here.  As my wife put in her first slice she exclaimed, "Now this is a toaster!"  It feels so different just pushing down on the start lever - smooth, solid, like a finely made machine.  The browning selection knob is a marvel.  On all of the other toasters I've had to put down my home-made rye bread twice in order to get it toasted properly.  With this Krup toaster I dialed it in at 4 and got just about perfect toast the first time - dumb luck, but I didn't have to put it down twice, and there was still more room to go on the browning selection knob!  I fine tuned it to 4.5 - perfect!  For those small end pieces the lever can be raised a wee bit more by hand so that you can take out the "smalls" easier with your fingers.  I still keep a pair of wood chop sticks around just in case... 

We enjoy toasting our home-made breads, and this Krup toaster is the finest that we've come across to date, and I think that we've tried most of them out there.  It's a bit commercial looking, but after using it my wife and I feel that it fits right in.  So, if you're tired of pushing your bread down twice in order to get it toasted  "just right", buy this Krups toaster.  You'll be glad you did!

Cliff.

sphealey's picture
sphealey

I can strongly recommend the Dualit 4-slice (I assume the 2-slice is similar) sold by King Arthur and others. It is built like a tank, has a strong mechanical lever and a spring that easily throws sandwich bread across the counter [ and onto the floor ;-( ], and not only do we always pull it out from under the cabinets but we have never set it higher than 5 of 10 for fear of setting the ceiling on fire! I have seriously considered buying 4 or 5 of them to last me and my kids the rest of our lives.

sPh

Cliff Johnston's picture
Cliff Johnston

...done that...if you know what I mean.  The Krup toaster gently raises the toast - a real treat - no chasing the sucker as it flies through the air, besides as I'm getting older my reflexes aren't so good...lol...

Cliff. Johnston
"May the best you've ever seen,
 Be the worst you'll ever see;"
from A Scots Toast by Allan Ramsay

Darkstar's picture
Darkstar

My wife and I got a Black and Decker toaster oven for our wedding almost 5 years ago. It's still making great toast and can be used for so much more. (like re-heating pizza so you don't get that 'microwave' gooey crust)

Growing up in the 20 or so years I spent in my parent's house I can remember replacing our toaster oven twice. Once was because I made a toasted cheese sandwich straight on the grate rather than in a pan. Mmmm....smoking cheese on resistor-wire!

sphealey's picture
sphealey

I should clarify here that by "4-slice" I mean the one with two long toast wells, not the one with four smaller wells (2x2-slice). I toast so much large bread (e.g. homemade sourdough rye) that only the long well toasters work for me. Sadly it appears that the Dualit 4-slice long well might be going out of production as the only ones I find now are on eBay.

To find the long well toaster, search for "dualit lite". Not sure why they named that one the "Lite" as it is quite heavy-duty!

sPh

lefty33's picture
lefty33

Toasters have long been a pet peeve of mine!  I've switched to using a toaster oven, which isn't any faster but has multiple uses.  Someday I will definately buy an industrial-type toaster.  The wimpy ones in general stores are definately no good!

Cliff Johnston's picture
Cliff Johnston

...we've been the toaster-oven route too.  My wife didn't like the space that it took up for what we used it for.  Try this Krup toaster.  You'll like it.  It's listed as a semi-professional toaster, and built like it too.  Of course it costs a few pennies more than some...

Cliff. Johnston
"May the best you've ever seen,
 Be the worst you'll ever see;"
from A Scots Toast by Allan Ramsay

Oldcampcook's picture
Oldcampcook

And here I thought I was the only one having problems with expensive (cheaply built) toasters.

Anyone want to discuss can openers and coffee pots now????

Old Camp Cook