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I'm im-Pressed: A Breville BSG520XL Panini Duo Nonstick Panini Press Review,
This review is from: Breville BSG520XL Panini Duo 1500-Watt Nonstick Panini Press (Kitchen)
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Since 2006 I have owned and regularly use a Breville 800GRXL Die-Cast Indoor Barbeque and Grill for making panini, grilling, and more. Previously I owned and was greatly disappointed by the Cuisinart GR-4 Griddler with removable plates. The removable plates are a nice concept, but not an important feature for me. Knowing the quality of the Breville 800GRXL, I eagerly wanted to try the Breville BSG520XL Panini Duo. Even so, I didn't think I would want to use both over time.
The Panini Duo is a no fuss non-stick panini press. The top floating hinged ribbed plate and flat bottom plate are coated with non-stick Quantanium(tm) allowing for oil free cooking while resistant to scratching even when using metal utensils. The top plate features adjustable height settings for making open faced sandwiches or desserts.
At first I compared the Panini Duo to my 800GRXL and thought I would miss features such as the drip tray, plate tilt feature, or the ability to lay out flat. However the lack of features and versatility of the Panini Duo, by comparison, are by design. The purposes of these two appliances are not the same.
The simplicity of the Panini Duo is this appliances strongest feature. I can quickly make two paninis by plugging in the outlet, assemble the sandwiches while waiting for the green light, and placing the paninis into the press. Since oil is not required, I made panini without buttering the bread. I prefer the butter flavor; however the bread still came out a toasty brown and crisp. I have toasted buns for burgers by leaving the top open. Additionally I reheated pizza by using the adjustable height feature to heat from above and below. These are all tasks I could accomplish with the larger feature rich Breville 800GRXL, but not with the same ease and efficiency.
While I will use the larger more versatile Breville 800GRXL for cooking breakfast, grilling, and preparing larger meals, the Panini Duo has become my favorite appliance to prepare a quick hot sandwich. The compact size is perfect for making lunch for me and my other half while taking little counter or storage space. If you are looking for a simple panini press for two, the Breville Panini Duo is the perfect choice.
Quantanium non-stick surface
Simple to use and care for
Adjustable height feature for melt and open face sandwiches
Oil/butter not needed for healthier cooking
Perfect for a family of two
Lacks features found in many panini presses