"Self-sufficiency does not mean 'going back' to the acceptance of a lower standard of living. On the contrary, it is the striving for a higher standard of living, for food that is organically grown and good, for the good life in pleasant surroundings... and for the satisfaction that comes from doing difficult and intricate jobs well and successfully." John Seymour ~ Self Sufficiency 2003

Sunday, 15 May 2011

Grid-free toasted sandwiches

I purchased this little gadget last year - we mainly use it on our barbecue.  It is another manual kitchen gadget :-)

But, being winter, it's not really barbecue-ing weather.  Also, I refuse to use an electric snackwich / toasted sandwich machine.  And why should I - this works better than either of them, and I don't have the grease filled machine to clean out afterwards.

Firstly, cut your bread, cheese and tomato as you would for any toasted sandwich.  But, butter the outside of the bread.

Pop the sandwich in a little silicone pocket - I use a silicone pocket as the toasting gadget is made out of aluminum.  Preferably, I would advise against  using aluminium in food preparation - there is circumstantial evidence that using aluminium aggravates the possibility of developing Alzheimer's in later life.  The heat generated by the cooking utensil apparently leeches aluminium into your food.  My late mother-in-law had Alzheimer's, and that is an ending that I wouldn't wish on anyone.  The same goes for all those cool drinks in aluminium cans - sure, the inner surface is lined, but the outer surface, where you place your lips, isn't!  It just isn't worth the risk.

(I understand that aluminium is essential for the transfer of heat in cooking utensils, and I do, wherever possible, purchase items which have a stainless steel outer / cooking surface.  Where that is not possible, I use, as mentioned, a silicone barrier of some sort.)

Place the pocket on the one side of the toaster, close the other side over, and secure it with the little catch.

Pop the sandwich filled toaster onto your heat source, and turning frequently...

... in about 3 - 4 minutes you have a delicious ooooozy cheese, piping hot tomato, toasted treat!

Cleaning couldn't be easier - simply wash the pocket in soapy water or pop it into your dishwasher.

This could also be used to cook steak, chicken fillets even eggplant Parmesan LOL

But the best thing is the grid power consumption = NIL!

Fellow South Africans who don't know this, or haven't seen it, can find this little gadget at their local Co-Op, Dassiesfontein and even some hardware stores stock it.  Also try a camping store.

For my American followers: following a comment I made on another blog, Jacob Bromwell has been in contact with me, and I suggested to them that perhaps they should add this to their range... if you want it, hassle them :-) (I even sent them a photo or two so that they could "see" what I was talking about). Guess it all depends on whether they want to have a new product item in their range and add something new and completely usable to the selection of off-grid products they offer.  There's nothing like innovation to keep a company at the forefront of their rivals... :-)


Jane said...

I never heard of the link you posted, but they really have some nice things. How I never run into them before? Great looking company.

RobynK said...

A visit to the Camping Shop on Thursday is planned now. They have items that we've discovered bigger shops in more populated towns don't stock so I won't be surprised to find something like this and it seems ideal for winter use when you have a wood stove :). Thank you!

Ginger said...

Dani, you have the best off-grid tools and gadgets! We are in a complete fire ban with not even outdoor cooking over bar-b-que grill allowed. I have been trying to submit comments to your blog for the last few days, but have been unable to. I hope all with Blogger is finally fixed. (Trust me, it was all brilliant! :-))

garden girl said...

Great gadget and great site. I just found you via Elephant's Eye and looking through your labels I just know I am going to enjoy all your earlier posts.

Dani said...

Jane - amazing what you can learn, from South Africa, about the US of A LOL

RobynK - yes - I use it on my wood burning stove too! Works a treat.

Ginger - a girl's gotta do, what a girl's gotta do living off grid LOL

Garden Girl - welcome - and thank you for your kind comments :-)

wickets said...

first off I cant find an app for your silicone pocket which leads me to believe you made the whole thing up! :) but regardless, I'm a little dof so maybe you can help explain how cooking and cleaning is grid power consumption NIL...is your electricity for stove and water via solar or similar? Sorry for newbie type questions, but very curious to know thanks

Dani said...

Wickets - give away - "dof" (translation = stupid)- shows me you're from SA LOL Whereabouts are you?

Secondly, the silicone pockets (I should've given a link) can be found at http://wizbake.com/c43/Wiz-Toast.aspx

Cooking is either via wood stove, gas hob or braai (barbecue) Water heating is via solar oven or gas geyser.


Leigh said...

What a fantastic little invention! I always learn something fun and interesting on your blog. Thanks for the link to Jacob Bromwell too. That stuff is right up my alley.

Dani said...

Leigh - always glad to be of service :-)

emilysincerely said...

Nice not to spend money on electric to make lunch. Neat sandwich press. Emily

Dani said...

emilysincerely - thanks - yup, no grid at all