The fact you’re here implies that you either just acquired or planning on investing in a Hamilton Beach Panini Press. Well, you’re welcome here because today, we are going to look at lots of topics regarding how to take full advantage of your unit while at the same time ensuring it serves your home for years. Some of the things we will look at include, how to operate the Panini Press, important safeguards for the electrical appliances, as well as tricks you can do to prepare a healthier meal for you and your loved ones. Without further ado, let’s get into the main section of the post.
Operating Your Hamilton Beach Panini Press
I’ll assume that the product you have is brand new and has never been used before. So, once the product arrives from Amazon or wherever you bought it, start by removing all the promotional materials as well as packaging materials before using it. Also, check if the appliance’s cooking plates are free of dust and clean. If needed, simply wipe them down using a damp cloth.
After placing your unit on the heat for the first time, you might notice a fine smoke haze. This is usually caused by the fact some of the components are heating for the first time, so you do not need to be overly concerned. Once you have all these pinned down, here is the guide you can use to prepare the perfect Panini.
1. Plug in
Insert the Hamilton Beach Panini Press’s power plug into a power outlet and turn ON the unit. To know that it has efficiently turned on, you will notice the red power light on the appliance illuminating.
Subsequently, permit the Panini Press to preheat while the top cooking plate is in the closed position. Depending on the model you are using, you should wait until you see the green-ready light illuminating.
As you wait for the preheating session to close, ensure you are preparing the Panini. Once the appliance has sufficiently preheated, place the Panini on the bottom cooking plate. Always purpose to place the panini sandwiches toward the rear of the bottom cooking plates.
4. Let it cook
After the perfect placement, close the Panini Press’ top cooking plate. If you have invested in one of the best modern Panini Press models, then the unit has come with a floating hinge that has been designed to adjust to the thickness of your sandwich and ensure that it presses down evenly.
In regard to the period of time you should wait, the general rule of thumb states that toasting will take approximately 6 – 9 minutes. The exact toasting period will be a matter of your taste. Also, note that the type of bread fillings used will affect the cooking period. Here is a guide on the best bread types to use for Panini sandwiches.
Once your Panini sandwich has been sufficiently cooked, use the unit’s handle to open the lid and raise the top cooking plate up and outwards. Use a wooden or plastic spatula to retrieve the Panini and place it on a plate.
Also NOTE: Never use a knife or metal tongs to retrieve your sandwich because these can easily cause damage to the non-stick coating. Another factor worth noting is that if your appliance retails with a safety locking storage clip, you shouldn’t use it to clamp down the topside cooking plate while your sandwich is inside the appliance. The top cooking plate’s weight should be able to gradually press down the Panini sandwich during the cooking process.
Important Safeguards for a Panini Press
- For any maintenance issues other than cleaning the appliance, visit Hamilton Beach’s official website or call the company’s customer service for advice. Doing something you can easily void the warranty.
- You are advised to regularly inspect your appliance. Do not try operating the appliance if its power plug, power cord, or the appliance itself has been damaged in any way. You ought to immediately stop using and contact the manufacturer for repair, adjustment, or examination.
- Children should always be supervised to ensure that they do not play with the unit.
- It is not intended for use by individuals (including young ones) with a lack of knowledge and experience or reduced sensory, physical, or mental capabilities. This should only happen if the person using the appliance has been given instructions or supervision concerning the use of the machine by an individual who is responsible for the person’s safety.
- To protect the appliance against electric shocks, do not immerse its power plug, power cord, or the appliance itself in water and any other liquid.
- Never allow the power cord to hang over a table or bench’s edge and do not knot it either.
- Always fully unwind the power cord before use.
Hints for Better and Healthier Results
- Fat-Free Snacks
Due to the Panini Press’ flat plate design, you will not ever need to use any margarine or butter on the outside of your toasted snacks.
Besides preparing Panini sandwiches, the flat bottom plate is also perfect for preparing foods such as pancakes and eggs. I also learned that the flat bottom plate’s design makes the Hamilton Beach units ideal for toasting Turkish bread and plain bread without any spreads or fillings.
When using fillings, try your best to use pre-cooked or canned fruits. Fresh fruits might give off excessive juices once heated. You also need to be careful while biting into sandwiches that have fillings like tomato and cheese or jam. These ingredients are known to retain heat and can burn you if eaten too fast.
This is arguably the most important ingredient when it comes to preparing Panini sandwiches. The bread type you pick can make or break the final taste of your delicacy. With that in mind, I urge you to check out the guide I recommended earlier on the best bread types for a Panini press. The guide will touch on the different bread types you should go for depending on whether you’re going for a wet or dry sandwich.