Which features do the best panini press have? How should you choose yours?
The panini press is earning its place in the kitchen: once just a professional fast food appliance, it is now a feature in more structured professional kitchens. There are two main reasons for this:
- technological developments, which give the panini press a wider range of functions and features; and
- advances in cooking methods, meaning that chefs are using the panini press as an all-round kitchen
The best panini press also support different cooking methods, but we will discuss this topic in another article: here we will look at which technological features are a must have.
Evolving features in the best panini press
Changes in consumer behavior and research into cuisines are behind the new-found respect for street food and “food-on-the-run” in the last 10 years. It’s no surprise then that a typical street food appliance, the panini press has come to the fore. Manufacturers have boosted their efforts to create the best panini press and improve these devices with high-tech options. The best panini press are now real kitchen instruments with lots of features. So, what features should a professional consider when choosing a panini press? Which ones are an absolute must? Here’s our list:
The panini press was designed to be fast. Its original feature was to cook food as quickly as possible. The need for speed is still one of the most important drivers when choosing a panini press, even now when you can use it to get a perfectly cooked steak. So to choose the best panini press always look for rapid heating time, maximum temperature, the material used for the cooking plates (closely affecting heat transmission).
If you want to use your panini press for more than just cheese toasties, then you need a flexible appliance. Flexibility for a standard panini press is simply a matter of available accessories, e.g. different cooking surfaces to address different needs. The best panini press has a Premium, cutting-edge design and is more flexible because they combine different cooking processes in one appliance. For example, our SpeeDelight panini press combines contact plate, infrared radiation and microwave cooking.
3 Energy Consumption
The panini press is a high energy user, directly connected to its speed. Still, the best ones are always designed to consume as little as possible and come with energy-saving modes (which is good for the pocket too).
The panini press is designed to save you time. So, you shouldn’t have to stand over it while it’s cooking. The best panini press can be programmed to do its bit while the cook gets on with other tasks. The best panini presses have a program for each and every dish and automatically switch off when the dish is ready.
The design of the press configuration, cooking surfaces and ventilation filters should include removable, easily accessible parts for a fast, thorough clean-up. Otherwise the panini press cleaning will be less efficient and the appliance will underperform.