Monday, August 26, 2013

Hamilton Beach 6 Slices Toaster Oven Broiler

Let’s go back a few weeks ago.  One beautiful sunny morning, my kids proceeded to make themselves toasts for breakfast.   I was upstairs trying to sort the clothes when one of them came to me to let me know that our four slices toaster was now a two slices toaster.  One side wasn’t working anymore.  We knew that it was slowly dying and that we would have to replace it in a near future.

So that week, I went to Wal-Mart to see what was available on the market.   There was two slices toasters as well as four slices toaster…  I was wondering if there was such a things as a six slices toaster – after with six people in the family it would be nice to have something that would allow us to make toasts a bit faster.   Lo and behold, I saw something on one of the shelves a toaster oven that could make six slices of bread at the same time.  Could it be?   Yes!  Amazing…

My husband and I talked about it and we agreed that we wanted to compare the prices in the US.   The following week, an idea came to my mind.   What if I contact the company making the said toaster oven to see if I could review it?   I quickly got a positive answer to my request and was ecstatic to let my husband knew about it.  However, I didn’t tell my kids right away.   I wanted to see their reaction…   I knew my oldest son would be impressed because he thought it would be neat to have a six slices toaster oven in the house.


They were surprised and excited when they saw what arrived one day.   Could this toaster oven really make 6 slices of toast?    We received an Hamilton Beach 6 slices toaster oven broiler model 31509C.  This small appliance has an oven cavity of 15 liters which could accommodate a whole chicken (small one obviously!).  You have four settings on it – toast, bake, broil and convection.    A bake pan, a broil grid and a removable crumb tray are included in it.  There is also a 30 minutes time with an auto shutoff.  

Okay – we did toasts no problem.  Though we were a bit disappointed with the toasts as we find one side is more toasted than the other side.  Besides, doing toasts in this small appliances was taking more time than a regular toaster.   When you get up in the morning, it was taking a bit too long to be ready.    Besides even though the box claims that you can do six slices of bread at the same time, it is a bit crowded in the toaster oven for six slices.  The slices of bread are extremely tight against each other and they were not all places securely on the grill.    We have decided against making six at a time because of the possibility of a bread to fall on one side.  

But what else can we do with this little appliance?   So we decided to explore other options.

So the first thing we made was hotdog.  We don’t eat hotdog often.  But we chose to do that to see what result we would get.   Time wise, it was reasonable.  But the hotdogs cracked while we cook them.   Personally I don’t mind but other people might not like this.   The hotdogs were thoroughly cooked when we ate them.


Menu number 2 was pizza pockets (again not something we usually buy) and salad.   I found that the middle of the pizza wasn’t warmed enough even with the proper time and level of heat.    I wasn’t impressed with the result that time.


Then we made spaghetti and meatballs.   Anyhow, I had a special bread cooking in the oven and needed to cook the meatballs.  What would I do?  Then it dawned on me that I could use the toaster oven.  So I decided to line the tray with foil paper in order to avoid a bit of mess.  This is an absolute must if you don’t want to spend too much time to clean up your toaster oven.    We also put some at the bottom of the toaster oven to pick up the crumbs of the toasts.   The result was fabulous and all the meal was ready at the same time.  Perfect timing thanks to the toaster oven!


One evening, I decided to make salmon patty shells.   I prepare the salmon and celery soup together on the stove top but I usually do the patty shells in the oven.   For a change I decided to make them in the toaster oven.    It took the same time as when I use the oven to make them but I knew I was saving electricity.    They were warm and golden when it was time to serve the supper.


Chimichangas were another meal we made with the toaster oven.  They were cooked but again I found that the time suggested wasn’t enough so I had to put them a little bit longer to have them warm enough.    


Bottom line, the Hamilton Beach 6 Slices Toaster Oven Broiler is great for on the go food and okay for toasts.    I would recommend it for university students looking for something versatile for their dorm room that can do a multitude of meals.   It also allow the student to use a variety of settings in order to make a healthy meal for breakfast, lunch or supper.   But I wouldn’t suggest this for a family with young children for various reasons: the appliance can become very hot for tiny fingers, when opening the door, the rack doesn’t come out which makes it tricky to take the toasts out (yes you can take the tray out manually but do wear a glove!), and it’s a bit complicated for kids to use compared to a regular toaster.   My kids have the habit to get up early and prepare their own breakfast but since this small appliance has arrived we have not let them use it alone.   Thankfully, they are obedient and didn’t touch it without adult supervision.   But not all children are like this.  So be careful if you purchase this and you have small children at home. 

The Hamilton Beach 6 slices Toaster Oven Broiler is a great little device when you are cooking multiples items that need an oven.  It’s great for lunch time when you don’t want to use the oven when the prices are higher for electricity, and it will provide you with warm food when you adjust the time recommended.   However, we were disappointed with the toast feature of it.   We would prefer having our toast a little bit faster when it comes for breakfast or making toasted sandwiches at lunch.  When you have a family of six people, you want rapidity when it comes to breakfast and lunch time.

Disclaimer: Thanks to Hamilton Beach Canada for sending me the above mentioned product for review purposes. I was not monetarily compensated for this review. Please note that the review was not influenced by the Sponsor in any way. All opinions expressed here are only my own.

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