Toasters: How To Pick Them

Toasters: How To Pick Them

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Toast is not just burn bits of bread. In fact they harbor a lot of culinary possibilities. Toast is needed to serve classical poached eggs, make bruschetta or crostini. Besides, any bread and butter would be tastier as toast than with ordinary bread. According to numerous requests from readers, we have tested several models of toasters with a wide price range and are ready to share our impressions.

Buying home appliances is a delicate issue. Even if you had enough money to buy all the existing assortments in a store, there would be a different problem: where to keep them all? It so often happens that toasters, food processors, blenders and coffee makers are actively used only for the first couple of months, and then are left forgotten in a closet. We decided to correct this misunderstanding and launched a series of articles “Testing appliances / utensils”. We are not going to tell you about the variety of devices (sales consultants are doing this job rather well), but, we will try and explain how useful they are, how to apply them, and which miracles they are capable of. You will have to decide for yourself if you could live without these or not.

 Appliance to be tested — Bugatti VOLO toaster. Price: $367

Bugatti VOLO toasterSpecifications:

  • Power: 930 Watt
  • Electronic controls
  • Number of slots: 2
  • Toasting intensity control
  • Reheat/ defrost/ bagel roasting functions
  • Body material: compressed hard steel

This toaster has caught our imagination from the moment we saw it. Bright colors and fantastic design make it absolutely unique and unlike any other toasters we have ever seen. While the name of the Italian manufacture company has given life to many jokes among my colleagues, who heard me trying to explain: “we are expecting the delivery of a Bugatti toaster. No, it has nothing to do with cars, but you will like the design none the less.”

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The appliance works impeccably well. It’s two slots for toasts are rather wide and allow you to use both ordinary bread and thicker slices. The toaster is also equipped with a grill for heating up buns. The appliance has 4 automatic programs, a heat-up and defrost function and 6 modes of toasting: as many as you need to fulfill everyone’s needs.

Bugatti VOLO toastsAfter the right program switches on, the bread slices lower into the toaster so smoothly it can be mesmerizing. On the sound signal, the toast comes out with a surface that is equally smooth. The toaster heats up moderately. To our mind, this gorgeous toaster has only one disadvantage: it should be bringing breakfast to our bed for the price that it costs.

Appliance to be tested: Jacob Jensen One-Slot Toaster. Price: $214

Jacob Jensen One-Slot ToasterSpecifications:

  • Power: 900 Watt
  • Electronic controls
  • Number of slots: 1
  • Roasting intensity control
  • De-frost function
  • Grill for roasting buns
  • Body material: steel

The toaster looks rather compact and nice. It allows you to heat up bread (the grill for heating-up buns is included in the package), as well as roasting frozen toasts. Besides, it has up to 9 toasting levels! Anyway, the last two of them did not find any fans: bread turned out very dry and burned as you can see on the photo.

We found the LED-display an original feature. It lets you keep an eye on its working programs. Its blue lights go out gradually according to the countdown. The steel body of the toaster heats up a lot during it’s work, so you’d want to keep your hands away from it. To take out the new toast you have to press the button and they will pop up a bit.

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Jacob Jensen One-Slot ToastsIt is remarkable that the toaster keeps the latest settings for toasting levels in its memory and then uses them again (but to benefit from this feature you should not unplug it).

Appliance to be tested: Toaster Two by Stadler Form. Price: $122

Toaster Two by Stadler FormSpecifications:

  • Power: 1000 Watt
  • Electronic controls
  • Number of slots: 1
  • Toasting levels control
  • Cancel button
  • Electronic timer
  • De-frost function
  • Cord compartment
  • Body material: aluminium

Toasters have a very laconic design, thanks to which it easily fits into any kitchen interior. To our mind, the toaster is very powerful (it’s an advantage for us as we have seen toasters that at their top power were not even able to make a toast brown and just left it over-dried). If you toast a loaf of white bagel on maximum setting ( #7) it will even burn a bit on the edges. So we have toasted white bread on the 2nd-3rd setting – this was enough. More powerful settings are better suited for brown bread because it contains more moisture.

Function for toasting frozen bread became a rather important feature. We often buy white bread in a bakery and store half of it in a freezer so it won’t harden. When you put such a loaf in a toaster it comes out as if just baked.

The toaster also has a function of toasting buns or cupcakes. It may not be used it a lot, but it’s still good that it exists. If you put a bun into the toaster according to the markings on a slot, its upper side would be more toasted.

toastsBut out best impression from this toaster is that the toast does not shoot out of it: the slots go down and raise slowly. When the toast is ready you will hear a sound signal. It’s an ingenious solution: a toaster that does not catch you off guard and not make you jump from surprise.

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Appliance to be tested — a toaster VT-1580 by VITEK. Price: $49

toaster VT-1580 by VITEKSpecifications:

  • Power: 900 Watt
  • Electronic controls
  • Number of slots: 2
  • Automatic centering of toasts
  • Heating-up for buns
  • Roasting intensity control
  • Heating/ cancel/ defrost/ functions and roasting buns from one side
  • Body material: stainless steel

toasts of VT-1580 by VITEKThe toaster has pleasantly surprised ous with its small size (it is perfect for a small kitchen) and with simplicity of use. We could intuitively understand it’s controls though it comes with a detailed manual. Besides the 7 levels of toasting (1-minimal, 7-maximal) this toaster has a heat-up function (Reheat button), defrost (frozen button for toasting frozen bread) and a function for toasting English buns (Bagel button).

Thanks to the last feature, some buns are toasted just from the inside, while their top and bottom crusts remain untouched. All functions and programs can be successfully combined with each other. To easily pick up toasts and buns from the toaster you need to slightly pull up the switching lever. The crumbs tray can be taken out without effort: no crumbs will be spilled.

As for the toasting levels – here everything depends on the type of bread and thickness of slices. Experience has shown that 3 is the optimal level for bagels and white bread, while 5 or 6 will work nice for black and brown bread. If you have somehow chosen a wrong level and wish to stop toasting, you just need to use the “Cancel” button. Unlike any of the other tested appliances, this toaster “shoots” the toast out abruptly with a fairly loud crack.