Imagine a contraption that allowed you to make a grilled cheese sandwich without plugging anything in or dirtying a pan. Yep, it's a Toas-Tite! If you've ever used one of these retro gadgets, you already know the magic behind their perfect circular sandwiches. Until recently, however, they were hard to come by. Search no longer!
The Toas-Tite, originally designed for campfire cooking, was made in the 1940s and 1950s. Lay a sandwich (with cheese!) on one side of the circular metal mold, clamp down with the other side, trim the crust, and heat for a minute or two on each side. The clamp creates a seal around the edges of the sandwich, keeping all of the gooey fillings safely inside. The resulting round sandwich had all the elements a kid could love: a crustless, cheese filled, and funny shaped lunch!
Why the brand stopped production in 1953 remains a mystery. Original Toas-Tites sell on eBay and at flea markets across the country, and are the next best thing to finding one in your parents' basement. However, just last year two women in New York set out to replicate Toas-Tites and, as The New York Times reports, sales are up and running in NYC and online.
Although the new Toas-Tites come with the original 1949 recipe booklet, we'd love to use it for way more than just sandwiches. The blog ToasTiteRecipes covers Toas-Tite tailor recipes like waffles, pies, and even baklava.
Do you have a Toas-Tite? What's your favorite Toas-Tite recipe?
• Buy it online: Toas-Tite $29.95 at toastite.biz
Related: Gourmet Grilled Cheese: Tips from Ruth Reichl
(Images: Toas-Tite original advertisement)