After dinner or any meal do you walk into the kitchen and groan a the heap of dishes awaiting you? While watching my sweet husband relieve me in the dish department the other night I realized there were a few tips that could help him get through this not so nice task much faster.
While he didn't take too kindly to my scrutinizing of his efforts I'm sure you will and can benefit. Here's my list for cutting down the time at the sink.
Before starting assemble your tools for maximum efficiency…
- Dish cloths: These are better for dish washing than sponges because sponges can harbor bacteria and are a bit harder to clean. If you still feel you would rather use a sponge be sure and either nuke it in the microwave on a regular basis or soak it in a bit of bleach and water on a regular basis. For dish cloths you have a good variety to choose from, waffle weave (my favorite), microfiber , or dish cloths with a mesh back for extra scrubbing (which I have used and enjoyed also).
Rubber gloves: Many people don't think about using rubber gloves for dish washing. They seem cumbersome, time consuming, and where do you hang them. Well once you realize how they save your hands, how you can use hotter water for cleaner dishes, and you're not so squeamish to touch that extra dirty dish then you quickly get in the groove. To dry them post a magnetic clip on the side of your refrigerator or front of dishwasher and hang them there to dry. I do.
1. Before you even start cooking or dinner preparation clear out the dish drainer or the dishwasher if they are full of clean dishes. Whichever you use to place your just washed or rinsed dishes. These are the areas that become the most cumbersome to clean up when you're ready to do the dishes so get them out of the way first.
2. Fill sink with hot soapy water. This you'll do right before you start cooking. Unless you need the sink (and you only have one) for washing fruits and vegetables. Then wait until after you've completed that and then fill the sink with hot soapy water.
3. When washing the dishes start with the easiest to wash like forks, knives and cups first. Save the pots and pans (the dirtiest) for last. As you finish washing a dish place it in the water to rinse off and then the dish drainer. Pots, pans, and very sharp knives should be dried off and put away.
4. If you'll be washing the dishes by dishwasher then just shake off the suds and place them in their appropriate rack in the dish washer. I don't reccommend putting pots, pans, and very sharp knives in the dish washer as it can damage the finish and dull knives.
5. If you were washing these dishes up before dinner right before you sit to your meal deal wash (or pre-rinse and place the dishes in the dish washer) the dishes you have dirtied and that are empty. Once the table is all set. The dinner is cooked and ready to go. Finish up the dishes that may be cluttering the counters or the sink. That way you'll have a clean slate at the end of the meal. And not so much to work with.
6. Once you've finished washing the dishes and emptied the sink, refill it with more hot soapy water to wash the dishes after dinner. If you feel dinner will take a bit longer and the soapy water will be cooled down too much wait until after dinner. Then fill the sink as you're clearing the table.
7. Wash the dishes right after each meal. If you wait it just becomes an albatross and you will dislike washing them even more. Don't wait until after the meal has settled and everyone is too relaxed to want to help out in the kitchen. Do the dishes asap!
8. To reduce waste of water while dish washing have a sink or bucket for washing and a sink or bucket for rinsing. Running the hot tap endlessly is not recommended.
9. Get someone else to do the dishes! If all else fails corner someone else into washing them.