Dishwashing Thoughts

Something that just occurred to me as I was hand washing my dishes –  simple kitchen lifehacks. I remembered my grandmother having a large single sink, my mom had a divided sink. When you have a large sink with no divider, how do you soap and rinse without continually running water? I use a large bowl filled with soapy water, I set the clean dishes in the sink next to the bowl and rinse a bunch of them at the same time. I know it may seem like a silly idea to share, but I realized another how-to-do-it I learned from my grandmother.

I also have a number of cast iron pots and pans. One of the tips I remember from my grandmother was having cream of tartar on hand. Used with a bit of water, it makes a paste and helps remove the hardened or baked-on food. Then I remembered that Ellie had a container of baking soda next to her sink.

Baking soda, cream of tartar, even vinegar are all excellent and non-toxic items to use in cleaning your dishes, pots, and pans.

Ellie’s Tips

Like Sam, I’ve learned a number of kitchen hacks from mom and grandmoms. Baking soda on a sponge with a bit of water will easily remove a lot of stuck-on food. Quite often, I’ll add hot water and a teaspoon or two of baking soda to a dirty pan, leaving it on a warm stove burner. (Be careful that your pan does dry out. That certainly defeats the effort!) When I’m ready to wash it following dinner, any food wipes off easily. If I have a pan that seems to have a residue over time, I will fill the bottom with water, add 1/4 cup of white vinegar, and let it sit on a warm stove. In 15 minutes or so, it will shine up nicely after being washed with hot soapy water.

I’ve also had glasses that over time seem to have a grayish edge. I’ve even seen this with glasses washed in dishwashers as well. Every now and then, I’ll add a bit of white vinegar to my soapy sponge and wash the rim of the glasses. VOILA! Gone!

I must mention that folks who use sponges are often criticized because they are dirty and hold germs. I’ve always used a bit of baking soda (or white vinegar) on my soapy sponge to wash dishes. Rinse well when done and squeeze it out. I lay the scrubby side of the sponge on the counter next to the sink and let it air dry. It doesn’t smell and is quite clean.

Between us, we have over 100-years of experience and Sam’s only 39! If you enjoy our life hacks and simple common sense approaches to sustainability and everyday life, please spread the word. 

Mulch on the Cheap
Broken Dishwasher #Gratitude