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How do you wash your dishes, pans, and pots?

Posted by cstr (My Page) on
Wed, Apr 24, 13 at 13:35

Our kitchen is small, and we only have room for a 30" sink base. We have always used a dish rack for setting cookware, knives, and plastic-ware to dry. Practical, but ugly.

We use the dishwasher for plates, glasses, cups, and flatware. I hardly ever see a photo of a kitchen on GW with a dishrack. So, what do folks do for non-dishwasher items? Do you just use the dishwasher for everything? Use a 2nd sink (not an option in our kitchen)? Have a helper to dry and put things away immediately? I would love to get rid of the visual clutter of the rack, but how? Enlighten me!


Follow-Up Postings:

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RE: How do you wash your dishes, pans, and pots?

DW for everything but knives.


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RE: How do you wash your dishes, pans, and pots?

DW for everything but good knives and pots. I put them on the counter after washing, then dry them by hand and put them away.


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RE: How do you wash your dishes, pans, and pots?

Cstr, with the exception of special, seldom-used items, what I did with non-dishwasher items was send them to Good Will and replace them with durable high-quality stuff. .

EVERYTHING used routinely goes directly into the dishwasher after use, including knives laid carefully on the upper rack. The door closes behind them, and when they're clean and dry they go directly to storage.

BTW, this was inspired long ago by a friend who one day looked at the laundry she did for herself, DH and 4 children--2 teenagers and 2 coming up fast--and on the spot decided to get rid of EVERYTHING that requiring ironing. Talk about a paradigm shift. This was unheard of back then, although the volume of 6 wardrobes on the front lawn instead of behind doors was a complete explanation--cut down only slightly by some extra-cool items the teens were only allowed to keep after begging almost tearfully to be allowed to iron them themselves. I'd admire her to this day for that alone. :)


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RE: How do you wash your dishes, pans, and pots?

I hand wash my pots and pans and sometimes my dishes (when I'm too lazy to empty the dishwasher...or it's running). I am probably in the minority here on gardenweb, but I have a dish rack that lives on my counter next to my sink...even when company comes. It's black and matches the color of my soapstone at least. The counter next to my sink has a sloped section which drains into my sink.


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RE: How do you wash your dishes, pans, and pots?

Those of you who use DW for "everything but knives" or close to it, which detergent do you use?

I have actually read many-many recommendations not to use DW for glasses, pots and pans, and a myriad of other things because the "new" detergents are too harsh and may damage the finish.

My SS cookware instructions said something like "DW-safe, hand-washing recommended" for that exact same reason. Some wine glasses come out from DW very cloudy and no amount of subsequent hand-washing and drying helps.

We use Cascade but tried other brands too.

What gives?


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RE: How do you wash your dishes, pans, and pots?

Seems that we have a few things (knives, salad spinner, measuring cup that held just water, etc) that don't go in the dishwasher at the end of every dinner. I hate having a rack on my counter and from experience, knew it didn't get put away. So when we remodeled the kitchen, I bought a thick dish drying mat to put on the counter (like below). When I put the dishes away I fold the cloth and stick it in the drawer. This system works wonderful for us.


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RE: How do you wash your dishes, pans, and pots?

I have a narrow, <7.5"-wide dishdrainer that hangs over one of my double sinks. It's for the knives and the anodized-on-the-outside-nonstick-on-the-inside T-Fal pans, and for drying the plastics that didn't dry in the dishwasher. Holds six dinner plates, has a spot for utensils, or holds a few pots and pans. Since it hangs down into the sink, it doesn't look too cluttered, and the counter is clear. My best rummage sale find at 25 cents! It almost always lives over the sink, but I can stow it beneath when I need to.

My sink cabinet is quite small, so my regular dishdrainer lives under the LAUNDRY sink; I bring it out on holidays.


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RE: How do you wash your dishes, pans, and pots?

I hand wash my pots/pans/good knives (as opposed to the cheap knives which I also have) immediately, shake them off, and set them either on the counter or actually right into the cupboard after a quick swipe with the clean towel.

I usually will put everything else in the d/w. But, if I've just done a load, and I just have one cup and a spoon or a bowl I tend to just hand wash those.

Was it at Ikea that I saw a dishrack that hung from the wall? Thought that was a good idea.

You can always place the rack into the sink after you are done washing, that would reduce the visual clutter aspect.

Do whatever is most practical for you!!! A kitchen is a workspace, not a showroom (imo).


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RE: How do you wash your dishes, pans, and pots?

I hand wash pots and pans then put them in the dishwasher to dry. Same if I wash another item. I air dry in the d/w. Sometimes I hand wash bowls and plates rather than let them accumulate.

I always rinse well before putting anything in the d/w. I don't like having dirty food sitting in there or dirty greasy water during the wash.

This post was edited by snookums2 on Wed, Apr 24, 13 at 14:49


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RE: How do you wash your dishes, pans, and pots?

I have one of those soap wand thingies with a sponge on the end, and I wash thermal plastic glasses that we use often with the wand, and hand dry, and put away. Even the knives go into the DW.

The only reason not to put knives in the DW is that they can cut the plastic, causing rust. I either snug them cutting side up inside the holes in a spatula, or I put them crossways so they can't cut the plastic coated metal in the DW.

Those drying racks are old timey and just ugly.


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RE: How do you wash your dishes, pans, and pots?

We do something similar to what abfabamy does. We load the dishwasher with everything except knives, pots and our vitamix container. Those go on a dishmat. We then dry and put away either after washing them or the next morning.


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RE: How do you wash your dishes, pans, and pots?

I do have fairly high-quality cookware - heavy gauge stainless pans and pots (from a restaurant), Le Crueset dutch ovens, cast-iron skillets (don't use soap on these)... I don't have worries about a dishwasher damaging these items. I DO have worries about a dishwasher being able to CLEAN these items. Can a dishwasher really get off the stuck-on and carbonized gunk that gets on pans from roasting or searing? Because I usually have to bust out a scotch-brite and some Barkeeper's Friend to get that stuff off.

I have placed saucepans in the dishwasher when they don't have anything "stuck" on them, and it has been fine. But my cookware usually has stuff sticking to it because that is where flavor comes from :-) !


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RE: How do you wash your dishes, pans, and pots?

Almost everything except knives and cast iron pan goes in the DW. I do have to occasionally use BKF or Bon Ami to scrub really gunky food off of my commercial pans after a hard sear or trip to the oven, but then they go in the DW afterwards also. My knives or other small handwashables rest on a small washcloth the color of my counters right after washing. Then I hand dry and put them away. I passionately hate a dry rack sitting on my counter. That's what a DW is for.

I use the Finish Powerball tabs from Costco for DW detergent. Recommended on the Appliance Forum.


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RE: How do you wash your dishes, pans, and pots?

The few things I hand wash I put on a towel and then dry and put away within 15 min.

Detergents can be harsh on some items. From what I have read it is due to the dirty dishes being too clean. The detergent needs something to clean. Its formulated to attack dirt(food). Some people are still rinsing items before putting in the dw. Big no no. You should scrap off any loose food and thats it.


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RE: How do you wash your dishes, pans, and pots?

I use the Finish Powerball tabs now, they work great. Sometimes cooked-on food is left behind so now I give that a quick scrub first, and put it in the dishwasher anyway.

But does anyone put their Le Creuset in? How about anything wood?


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RE: How do you wash your dishes, pans, and pots?

I use the plain generic Wallyworld or Kroger powder. It's actually one of the top rated ones. No rinsing! That's what gets people in to trouble with etching and cloudy glassware. And I have DW safe knives, so everything goes into the DW. I don't own anything that can't. And that's LeCreuset to AllClad and everything else. It all goes in the DW. Yes, it all comes out clean. That's what enzymes do. And it's why you shouldn't rinse your dishes before washing them.

The single exception to that is some vintage barware with a gold rim. That doesn't go in the DW. But that's it.

Oh, and a tip from a remodel I did was even if you have a small kitchen, using 2 DW's can make sense because you won't have to keep your dishes in the cupboard then. You have one you get the dishes out of to use, and then the one that gets loaded with the dirty things. When the "clean" one is empty, it becomes the dirty one and you run the dirty one and it becomes the clean one.


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RE: How do you wash your dishes, pans, and pots?

Everything goes in the dishwasher in my kitchen except for the insert to my rice cooker. That I'll wash and let it dry on a towel or just dry it and put it away. I spent too many hours growing up hand washing that I just hate to do it anymore. My dishwasher is my life saver!

For detergent I use Finish Powerball Tabs


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RE: How do you wash your dishes, pans, and pots?

I hate to admit this but I wash my dishes before they even go into the dw. Because I do this I basically stopped using my dw altogether and started using a drying rack. When we starting planning this reno I actually considered removing the dw altogether an putting a bank of drawers in it's stead.

We are getting all new appliances and we received a free dishwasher that will have a custom door put on it. So I here by swear that when the new kitchen goes in I will try my best to use the dw all the time except for things that need to be handwashed. I am ditching the drying rack in favor of a drying mat like abfab posted. I almost ordered one the other day but didn't know how well it would work so a big ty to abfab for posting!


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RE: How do you wash your dishes, pans, and pots?

We don't have a dish rack, but I hand wash all of our pots and pans (we got a Caphalon set for our wedding that is not dishwasher safe - not a problem back in 2000 since we didn't have a dishwasher - oh well), and basically anything else "big". I like a lot of bang for my buck and I'd rather hand wash a colander so that five more plates can fit in the dishwasher.

Anyway, I either dry them immediately or lay them on a dish towel to dry and put them away later.

I learned a long time ago that it is best for me to run the dishwasher last thing before I go to bed and empty it first thing in the morning while the coffee is brewing. Every. Single. Day. I used to wait until it was 100% full and then run it, but then I always had dirty dishes in the sink throughout the day while it was running and it always seemed inconvenient to empty it. Now it's empty every morning ready for the day's dishes Much more zen.


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RE: How do you wash your dishes, pans, and pots?

I hand wash pots, pans, knives and crystal, put them on the drying mat, dry them and put them away. Everything else goes in the dishwasher. I can't stand seeing those ugly racks out.

One of my close friends, who has a spotless, gorgeous house, puts her drying rack in one of her double sinks and it stays there to catch all the hand washed items. It works for her as it keeps the counters clear and you can't see it until you're standing over the sink!


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RE: How do you wash your dishes, pans, and pots?

I put everything in the dishwasher. Crystal stemware, china with silver leaf, my MAC knives, wooden spoons, "handwash" suggested pans and items, etc.... Everything seems to do fine. If it can't make it through the regular cycle it gets donated or thrown out (if the dishwasher ruins it). Oops, pizza stones and cast iron would be the ONE exception that just get rinsed. I have a Bosch and use Cascade with Dawn tabs. My time is worth a LOT; wooden spoons aren't.


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RE: How do you wash your dishes, pans, and pots?

Kiko, Holy cow I would be a wreck putting my Waterford in a dishwasher or my good china. My everyday china I could do but no way no how with the good stuff cause it may come out looking fine but I would be in the ER with a panic attack!


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RE: How do you wash your dishes, pans, and pots?

Slightly off topic, but is it true that knives become dulled when placed in the DW? My mom told me that years ago. is it an old wives tale? Ever since i can remember, I have always hand washed them. Just curious :)


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RE: How do you wash your dishes, pans, and pots?

I know I sound crazy, but I just really, really, really don't want to spend any of my time/life handwashing things! Not my cup of tea.

holly-kay, I have such horrible memories of being forced to handwash china after family meals growing up that I refused to register for or own any china for the first 12 years of our marriage! I did decide to buy a cheap/plain set a few years ago when I was hosting holidays. It's Mikasa Cameo Platinum and it's dishwasher safe (although handwashing is recommended).

rkb21, the dishwasher probably does dull the blades (and can loosen the handles of certain ones). But I figure, hey, I have to get them sharpened anyway!


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RE: How do you wash your dishes, pans, and pots?

I put as much as I can in the dw. Without Pre washing! I have some big pots that I wash by hand because they would take up too much room. I just put a towel or a drying pad down on the counter for those.


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RE: How do you wash your dishes, pans, and pots?

rkb21- yes it's true that knives get dull in the DW - some of it can happen from the knives banging around but I think the hot water/detergent can dull them as well


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RE: How do you wash your dishes, pans, and pots?

Is there a detergent that doesn't need to have dirty dishes? The water gets disgusting. My dishes were coming out stinky. Family member has the same problem and no longer puts crud through the d/w. I also don't run it frequently so do not want food and stink in there. I will continue to rinse but if there's a better detergent to use, I can change that.


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RE: How do you wash your dishes, pans, and pots?

I was a lot happier when I invested in a stainless-steel dish rack instead of the plastic one that I was using previously. I know that they're not the most attractive thing to have sitting on the counter or in my sink, but it's the lesser of two evils when compared with putting the pots, pans, knives, and plastics in the dishwasher. I let everything dry overnight (though I usually hand-dry pots b/c they're large!)


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RE: How do you wash your dishes, pans, and pots?

Dishwasher for almost everything!
I figure my Waterford, Riedel, and my good china are safer in the DW than hand washing by me!
I have a couple hand painted glasses that don't go in.
The other night DH made a pot pie that drooled on the cookie sheet. I looked at it and said this won't come clean. It did!
I have been using Miele tabs for about 2 years. I was reading on appliances about some other options to try.

I don't rinse the dishes- the book says don't rinse, so I don't. DH rinses some things.
I also put my knives in the DW. Heresy!

Most items come out totally clean and dry.
Rims in plastic do collect water and I set them on a nice dish towel to drain and then put it all away(towel included)

Cryptic from iPhone.


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RE: How do you wash your dishes, pans, and pots?

I put nearly everything in the dishwasher (and it goes in dirty). I use Finish Powerball tabs, recommended by Consumer Reports. The exception would be insulated water bottles, my All Clad skillet, and any Le Creuset items. I let them dry on a mat similar to abfabamy's. i have read knives shouldn't go in because of dulling, but I do it anyway.


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RE: How do you wash your dishes, pans, and pots?

I put most everything in the DW, but there are still some things that I don't put in that we use regularly...super tall waterbottles for the kids' sports, cast iron, enormous Le Crueset pots, and wooden spoons.

I couldn't find a drying rack that I liked...I wanted something really sleek but that raised things off the counter a bit so they'd dry from all sides (can't get that with a towel).

So I took a cooling rack and dipped the feet in Plasti-Dip so it wouldn't scratch the counter. Works beautifully.

DSC_2075


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RE: How do you wash your dishes, pans, and pots?

Deb,

Where have you been before??? I have already scratched my new and beautiful SS counters by moving other metal objects on them. LOL

Should I dip my SS spoon-rest in Plasti-Dip? Would it still be DW-safe?

ETA: Your kitchen is stunning!

This post was edited by eleena on Thu, Apr 25, 13 at 9:31


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RE: How do you wash your dishes, pans, and pots?

I doubt PlastiDip would be good in the DW, honestly. You could look it up, though.

I don't worry about scratches for the most part, especially around my stove. But this would leave loads of scratches in a small area, plus that part of the counter is protected and so is gleaming and new looking...so scratches would be more noticeable.

My reveal is...somewhere. You can google it. The kitchen was also on houzz, that I do have the link for.

Here is a link that might be useful: Debtex's kitchen on Houzz


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RE: How do you wash your dishes, pans, and pots?

snookums2, you might want to start a new thread. It sounds like an issue with your dw. Quickly, try throughly cleaning the inside of your dw, run an empty load with just vinegar, try using a "clean your dw" product. Clean out any filters. Make sure your dw is functioning properly.


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RE: How do you wash your dishes, pans, and pots?

If you are having stinky DW water, then you have an installation problem. It may lack the high loop.


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RE: How do you wash your dishes, pans, and pots?

Deb: great idea for using a cooling rack!


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RE: How do you wash your dishes, pans, and pots?

The water is stinky when I've opened it during running. All that food, very gross! It's the final, dry dishes that have a very unpleasant odor.

It's been in for probably 12 years. The problem surfaced a few years ago. I did run various cleaning products through it, including vinegar. I'm going to have a plumber in so will have him check for the loop. I think when I was researching the loop thing I was told today's dishwashers were built differently and didn't require them. It was already handled by design. I seem to recall checking and seeing a loop or it hung high but can't really remember.

I had problems with that drain, with the washer, so maybe it wasn't draining properly for the d/w either even though it seemed fine. Other family member has a sink that gets clogged periodically.

Thanks.

This post was edited by snookums2 on Thu, Apr 25, 13 at 9:50


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RE: How do you wash your dishes, pans, and pots?

I don't have a dishwasher. As I wash my dishes, pots, and pans in the sink, I set them each on the side of the sink to drain , then afterwards dry them, and put them away, after each meal or use. I grew up with a Mom who did this, I was forced (I admit) to do help with this as soon as I was able, and it's just a habit with me as an adult.

Although I can remember periods in my life where leaving dirty dishes in the sink "until I got to them or got home" was common. Of course there has only been me in the house so not a load of dishes like some families would have.


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RE: How do you wash your dishes, pans, and pots?

Heh, "I'm letting them soak" lol.


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RE: How do you wash your dishes, pans, and pots?

The purpose of the high loop is to prevent backflow into the DW. Or contamination from the garbage disposal or other sink yuckies going down the DW hose and into the DW. Without a high loop, all of that is possible. Also, some detergents are more efficient than others at dissolving food particles. You want an enzyme based detergent, not a bleach based one. Powder, not liquid. Liquids are generally bleach based.


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RE: How do you wash your dishes, pans, and pots?

Amazing how few of us still hand wash. Yes, I hate the cluttered look, but good knives, most of our pots and pans (copper, cast iron, SS), large baking sheets, etc. have to be hand washed. Many plastics do not dry well in the dishwasher. A stainless steel dish rack with a transparent drip try helps a bit with appearance.


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RE: How do you wash your dishes, pans, and pots?

Deb, I love the idea of the grill rack! Many times my stuff is wet on the inside if it sits flat on the mat, but my issue with the rack would be the water that drips underneath onto the counter. I think I will combine my idea with yours and put the drying mat under the rack. This way the inside of the items will dry and the water will be absorbed with the mat! An appropriately sized rack will still fit in my drawer when finished. Love it!! Thanks!!!


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RE: How do you wash your dishes, pans, and pots?

Thanks. I use Cascade. But, you know, I tried that Charlies for everything for a while. Maybe that caused some problems with buildup or something. I remember reading about fatty soaps and stopped.

I'll have the plumber check the install when he's here.

This post was edited by snookums2 on Thu, Apr 25, 13 at 10:07


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RE: How do you wash your dishes, pans, and pots?

I don't use a DW -- all dishes, flatware and cookware are washed by hand.

Not everybody's choice, I realize, but it is mine. I use many things every day that couldn't be washed in a DW, so I'd still be washing by hand anyway.

But I want to ask this question: why is a dish drainer automatically described as "ugly"? Sure there are ugly ones, but there are also ones that are reasonably attractive (stainless steel, for example). I think it's not the dish drainer but the pile of drying items in it that earns the distaste.

So what makes these items ugly when drying, but still admired and fit for display on open shelves and pot hanging racks afterward?

This idea seems to be the fruit of a class/economic based shibboleth that equates dishwashing and dishes in process of being handwashed as being symbols of a lower standard of living. It's similar to the current prejudice against outdoor clothes lines.

Kitchens are work rooms not living rooms. Except of course now that culturally the traditional peasant life-style of combining all waking life into one room is so trendy, i.e. the "open plan", kitchens are the living rooms, again.

Somehow the nitty-griity dailyness of visibly drying cookware (and clothing) has become offensive to the relatively recently sophisticated, anxiously upwardly mobile modern taste.

Note: my point has nothing to do with the time saved in busy lives by using a DW, nor the claimed energy and environmental benefits of using a DW, nor the belief that everything ought to washable in a DW.

I'm just trying to highlight the prejudice against hand dishwashing and visible dishes-drying-on-a-drainer that has come to connote something embarassing, tacky, downmarket, etc.

Dish drainers are not (or at least don't have to be) ugly; drying dishes are not ugly.

There, I said it! I feel better now. (Off to do the breakfast dishes.)

L.


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RE: How do you wash your dishes, pans, and pots?

Deb,

Yes, I Googled and found it on Houzz, that is why I removed that question from my post. :-)

Thank you!


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RE: How do you wash your dishes, pans, and pots?

I agree with you liriodendron. I have a beautiful, functional kitchen now but it never looks like the magazine ones. It's full of the evidence of cooking and eating and drinking and cleaning and living everyday. It's what it is for.


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RE: How do you wash your dishes, pans, and pots?

I just use a clear plastic dishdrain tray that usually goes under a dishdrainer. You can buy just the tray separately. It's flat, basically clear so not really that noticeable if empty. I just make sure I prop items against the side so air circulates underneath. I think I got this last one at Target. I also have a 30" base cabinet....the tray sits to the left of the sink over an 18" cabinet next to a wall...this would not be really usable counterspace anyway, so having and leaving the tray there works perfectly.


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RE: How do you wash your dishes, pans, and pots?

Youngdeb, I really like your solution of using a flat rack. My issue with the dishdrainers is that most are designed for plates and glassware (dividers, etc.). I primarily use mine for cookware and other odds and ends -- things that don't fit nicely into it and leave a jumble of detritus sitting up on the counter.

Liriodendron, I don't think my problem with dishdrainers is related to class -- it's related to messiness. A bunch of stuff sitting on in a tangled pile on the counter just looks messy to me, much in the same way that leaving out makeup or toiletries in a bathroom does. Or a messy pile of books or newspapers on a coffee table.

I think that a good solution for my new kitchen will be to have runnels put into the counter, with a large flat draining rack sitting on top. That way, the dripping water can run down into the sink, I can have a large space for setting things to dry and not have to pile them on top of each other. Hopefully, when I get a better quality dishwasher, I'll be able to put more cookware in it. In reality, I know I will still hand wash at least a few items every night.


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RE: How do you wash your dishes, pans, and pots?

I use the same system my Mom used...a "sink of suds". I clean as I go . I use a large metal mixing bowl and get it started with hot water and suds when I first start a project. As lirio says there are things that I am going to use multiple times as I go through my list of dishes that I am making. I follow mise en place as I cook. I have a plan as I go along and it goes from dry to wetter messier items. I reuse many things as I go. Also I cook from less smelly less oily etc to more so. Thus being able to reuse skillets, cutting board etc. We donot eat meat or very very rarely so no need to wash cutting boards during prep. I have very large restaurant boards that I got from my chef son's supplier. I can have multiple piles of things prepped. I also use bowls for this purpose. Before I turn the heat on or the oven I have everything weighed, measured,portioned.

I cook much as he does due to working with him for 5 years and learning his techniques. It is so much easier and more organized and I can get so many more projects done and the beauty of it is that when I am finished so are all the dishes. No dishwasher needed and everything is washed and has dried while on towels on the counter.

Of course in his restaurants they run everything through the dishwasher for sanitizing purposes. In a home setting that is not necessary. He handwashes many items and also works from clean to dirty for that reason. Very efficient. Interesting to see other's take on this. c


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RE: How do you wash your dishes, pans, and pots?

snookums2, I had a similar problem with my DW a while ago. Had been fine for years, then the stinky water in the bottom started intermittently, then frequently. Then my GD failed, started to leak: once it was taken out, no more stinky water in the dishwasher!


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RE: How do you wash your dishes, pans, and pots?

I have a very small drainer under the sink, as well as a fabric mat that I place underneath. Most items go in the DW, but if I have something that doesn't go in the DW (i.e., good knives), I wash as I use them and place them in the drainer. I will often dry them right away and put everything away because I don't like visual clutter and keep my countertops fairly clear at all times. The exception is when I've been doing a lot of cooking/baking in large amounts and have a lot of large pots, pans, baking dishes, etc. Then I hand wash them, pile them on and around the drainer and call it good. After a marathon cooking session, I'm ready to relax. So I just let them air dry and put things away a few hours later,or in the morning

By the way, regarding the choice to not have a DW---during the time I was without a working kitchen, I have to say I didn't mind hand washing everything in our utility sink in our laundry room. Of course, if the dishes were constantly draining in my kitchen, I wouldn't like that so much. More to the point, I have a friend who deliberately did NOT put in a DW for a very good reason. She enjoys the quiet time in the kitchen with one or another of her daughters, while she washes and one of them dries. She says she has had some of her most meaningful conversations with her girls at that time and that's when they usually confide in her. Definitely works for her, and time well invested.


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If only the 18" dishwashers weren't so much MORE expensive than the standard 24". For my 2 person household, and smaller kitchen, that size would make so much more sense! I would run it more frequently (I only run when full or out of a certain dish) than I do now. Then I would have space for another little pullout or another set of drawers.


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RE: How do you wash your dishes, pans, and pots?

raee, thanks for the information. This one goes into a drain, not the sink. Still, makes me think it could have been that drain clogging problem. It would seem bad water backing up makes sense. What a dreadful thought. Last time I was at the other house, when I put a drinking glass to my mouth, stinky glasses again! It's not terribly strong but is very unpleasant.


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RE: How do you wash your dishes, pans, and pots?

Trailrunner, that is fascinating to read how you cook! I like to clean as I go too. So much easier.

I think counter drying can look messy. Looking at messy, things not put away or work still to be done, can be stressful. So, peace and calm from clean counters and orderliness can be a good thing for some people. Clutter not so much. There's a reason Fly Lady recommends always going to bed with a clean and sparkling sink!

Now having a drying rack can also look homey, like when seeing an old fashioned farm kitchen with the clothes hanging in the breeze outside. A very pleasant scene!

But it somehow doesn't fit the style of many of our more glamorous kitchens of today! Those clean lines and pretty finishes get disrupted. Crumbs on the floor stick out, too, against pristine. Whereas you could probably have a trail of muddy footprints in a casual cottage or farmhouse kitchen and still feel pretty good! lol


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RE: How do you wash your dishes, pans, and pots?

We are all so different. That's one of the things that makes this site so valuable---the different points of view that can help us to hone in on what works best for us.

I know some love to be able to hide their drying dishes in their deep sinks. I would absolutely hate that. I have waited so long to have my big single sink, and I hate to have anything sitting in the sink a moment longer than absolutely necessary. I'll gladly put up with a small drainer and mat for those times I need to hand wash some things.

I will admit, though, that I've come to appreciate the sink rack that came with my sink. At first, I didn't even use it, thinking it would be more bother than help.I was wrong! I love that my developmentally delayed daughter can carry her dishes to the sink after meals and safely place them in the sink (she can unwittingly be a bit rough, even destructive, with things and, sadly, often leaves damage in her wake). I also like being able to leave just 1-2 small things in a corner of the sink to drip dry without affecting my ability to use the rest of the sink (i.e., every morning my cat gets a couple tablespoons of canned cat food as a treat in a small porcelain bowl about the size of a sauce dish in which you might get red sauce or wasabi in a restaurant. i wash and rinse it, and it dries in about half-an-hour in the sink and then goes back under the sink for the next morning. Every night DH brings home his SS Starbucks mug and leaves it on the counter. I wash it, set it on the rack in a corner of the sink, and he picks it up there in the morning and starts over again.


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RE: How do you wash your dishes, pans, and pots?

I put most things in the dishwasher with the exception of wooden spoons and cast iron. The occational big, bulky pan gets hand washed and put on a drying pad. My favorite saying is..."just leave them them on the pad and I'll dry them in the morning." ;)


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RE: How do you wash your dishes, pans, and pots?

Sail our pupsters and King Tommy (our adopted cat) eat from china plates. They each have their own pattern, so I know which saucer goes to which animal. They get washed each morning and each evening and sit in my dish drainer until the next use.

Our last precious kitty started looking at us intently when we got ice and if we dropped a piece on the floor he was in kitty heaven. Dh decided that ice water in a crystal goblet would be fitting for him (no, not my Waterford). When he died 4 years ago it was a sad, sad day for us. I can't see crystal that I don't think of our darling Boo kitty!


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RE: How do you wash your dishes, pans, and pots?

Holly-Kay, Ahh, what a sweet story. Yes, our cats are all individuals, aren't they? My boy cat, who died about 8 months ago, LOVED ice water, or more particularly, the ice itself. All of our cats loved drinking water as it was poured into the bowl, so for many years we maintained an indoor fountain with a high arching copper tube (shaped much like a kitchen faucet) that the water came out of. It was so fun to see the cats (we had 3 at the time) line up and wait their turn to lap up water at the fountain. No, my cats aren't spoiled.


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RE: How do you wash your dishes, pans, and pots?

To look at pictures of kitchens, you'd think we all keep attractive bowls of lemons on our countertops . . . but everyone I know in real life has a dishdrainer on the countertop.

And a bag of Oreos.


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RE: How do you wash your dishes, pans, and pots?

This is how I do it. Wash all pots and pans by hand, and leave to air dry in sink with dish drainer. Bad picture but you get the idea.


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RE: How do you wash your dishes, pans, and pots?

I don't wash pots, large bowls, or Wusthof knives in the dishwasher. I have a double sink (would never give that up). I wash stuff in one and let it dry in the other. Later, I put it away out of that sink. I also use a cooling rack like Deb above, but I put a dishtowel under it so the wet drips gather onto the towel and don't spot my granite. This is if I need more room than the "clean" sink or if I'm drying crystal glasses or something that needs to be raised up and get air underneath.


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RE: How do you wash your dishes, pans, and pots?

I'm in total agreement with lirio and itsallabout. Who says a dish drainer with one's expensive pots and precious glasses is ugly? The glossy magazines beating down the door to photograph your pristine kitchen?

I run my DW about once a week, mostly plates, bowls, everyday glasses (who am I kidding? all my glasses are everyday) and silverware. Everything gets rinsed really well because I don't want food residue (e.g., egg) sitting in a sealed chamber for a week. Pots and pans in the DW take up too much room so I wash them by hand. They gotta dry somewhere. The rack is perfect, with its little sloped pad to redirect runoff back into the sink.

I admit that when people are over, I will clear out the drying rack so there's room to start over. I really worry more about people getting cat hair on their clothes whenever they sit down. If I am judged by a drying rack next to my sink in my kitchen where I prepare food and then clean up afterwards, I invite those folks to stay away and spare themselves the trauma of seeing what I tolerate in my kitchen.


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RE: How do you wash your dishes, pans, and pots?

Just a note for people who think that having runnels or a flat drainer on the side of the sink will do the trick. It won't if you have more than a few items.

You need the containment of a dish drainer with sides and vertical racks or slots in order to contain the items safely.

I don't find the look of a neatly filled dish drainer to be messy looking. It's an art, almost a pleasure to fill one so that the set of items you've washed looks workmanlike -- and is stable and no water is trapped among the items.

It's the same thing as when I hang out my clothes (which I do for all my wash, year-round). Just having them pinned up is not the only goal. Having them pinned up so they dry in the most efficient and wrinkle-free manner is the first step. But I also get pleasure and often take the trouble to arrange them in pleasing assortment of shapes and colors. For instance, if I have a load of cotton turtlenecks (a garment I wear daily) I'll hang them in a prismatic succession, just for the pleasure of seeing them display against the white sheets.

There is the same opportunity when filling a dish drainer with my kitchen stuff. I like to have my plates in graduated ranks. My pots and bowls are arranged like overlapping scales of a pinecone. My flatware is sorted into separate slots, of gleaming knives/forks/spoons.

So, no my dish drainer doesn't look messy, or a hodgepodge. It looks like a place where someone has given thought and judgement to best placement of the items, in both the pratical and aesthetic realms.

I have tried Trailrunner's hot soapy bowl method, but I find in my chilly northern house the water gets cold and icky too fast. If something is particularly sticky I might fill it with water, but mostly I just stack things on the dirty dish side of the sink until I get have the time to wash up. Depending on the pace of the meal prep, that might be after we are finished eating or at some other interval during the work flow.

I am often struck by how many epople (who use DW) advocate "cleaning up as you go". That's fine if your cleaning up means loading the item in the DW. But for those who hand wash everything, it's more efficient (time and energy needed to for hot water) to amass a mid-sized group of items, before beginning the washing up. I am not troubled by the look of dirty items awaiting cleaning. After all these items were clean a few moments ago, and what's in them is the remnants of my food prep. I plan on eating the stuff that was made in them and I don't eat dirt!

L.


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RE: How do you wash your dishes, pans, and pots?

I am often struck by how many epople (who use DW) advocate "cleaning up as you go".

I like to reduce my work load at the end and often wash things when waiting for something else. It's the most relaxing way for me and reduces clutter. Now, I have a very small kitchen. But still, I don't like a big mess at the end to deal with. I wipe up spills on the counters as I go, too.

It always amazes me how critical people can be of what other people like or how they do things. Washing dishes is a new one, lol. You learn so many new things on the internet!


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RE: How do you wash your dishes, pans, and pots?

"I don't like a big mess at the end to deal with."

That is what DH is for. LOL

But seriously, it is only fair that he cleans if I cook. :-)


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RE: How do you wash your dishes, pans, and pots?

"It always amazes me how critical people can be of what other people like or how they do things."

Amen, sister.


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RE: How do you wash your dishes, pans, and pots?

I hand wash the Calphalon pots and pans, Wusthof knives, Riedel glasses, anything with wood, and my grandmother's china when I use it. Those items get dried with a towel to avoid spotting, and put away, so they are not a problem. The problem is all the darn plastic items that come out of the DW wet. I run the DW at night, unload the wet items into the dish rack to air dry while I am at work, and then empty the rack when I get home at night. (Ok, some nights I am too lazy and leave it for the next night.) My less-than-stylish black Rubbermaid dish rack fits under the sink so I can hide it when company comes over. I am thinking about buying a large dish mat to see how that works, but I worry about the lack of air flow.


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RE: How do you wash your dishes, pans, and pots?

I also hang dry almost all of our clothes. The only things that go in the dryer are sheets, towels, sock, and underwear for DH and the kids. We are all tall, and I have worried about pants and sleeves shrinking my whole life, plus it is easier on the clothes and the environment to use the dryer less.


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RE: How do you wash your dishes, pans, and pots?

Trailrunner, I don't even cook that much anymore, but when I do, I pretty much do the same thing. My mother did it, and so did my grandmother, and I guess I picked it up from them too. I don't always have everything measured out but I do have all the ingredients laid out and I do pretty much wash as I go exactly the same way as you, with the least messy first if I can. I have 3 separate cutting mats for the times when I do need them for meat or fish and another for greens, etc. I also have a couple of small wooden ones for most everyday chopping. Most dishes and tableware go in the DW but pots/pans, knives, cast iron, wood, and other stuff are handwashed. It just seems easier for the few we have and save the DW for a big load of dishes. I lay things on a dish towel after they are rinsed and we dry and put away. Nothing stays out unless it's something that needs to air dry for a few hours like a colander or grater.


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RE: How do you wash your dishes, pans, and pots?

outside...good to know we share that. My Mom and Grandmother's didn't have DW's. I remember my Grandmother teaching me how to wash dishes. I was about 4-5. She would heat the water on the stove. Then each dish was placed in the water very carefully one at a time so that there was no chance of breaking them. I can still here her voice telling me not to stack hot plates as they could crack. The set of china for 12 was used every Sunday when my Dad was growing up and then when we were all growing up. Dad was born in 1910. I have the set now. There is one plate missing...full set of 12 of everything.

I love the mindfulness of the prep and then the actual cooking and then the cleanup. I get in a zone. I too like the sense of accomplishment when viewing the cleanup almost as much as the food ;) As far as waiting till the end as lirio comments on I can't do that. I have very little in my kitchen in the way of "stuff". I use over and over and then when it needs it I wash and use some more. I would run out of equipment pretty quick if I waited till the end to wash up . This is why I do dry/un-messy /non-smelly stuff first and work toward the other stuff last. Very little need to do more than wipe off with a cloth or use my rubber spatulas..those I could never do without ! I scrape bowls and pans almost clean . My Mom called the stuff left in mixing bowls "yickin's " . That is what my brother Jim named them . The yickin's were much prized...cake batter being the most prized and frosting a close second ! We all fought for the beaters from the hand mixer. When my kids came along I had to forgo using the spatula when the prized yickin's were in the bowl :)

Nice memories...and different approaches to all things are what keep the world going round..and the Forum interesting ! c


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RE: How do you wash your dishes, pans, and pots?

I'm a "clean as you go" person for two reasons: 1) I have a small kitchen so need to get things out of the way as soon as possible and 2) it stresses me out a little to have visual clutter while I'm trying to cook. For instance, before I start cooking a big meal, I make sure that if my DW hasn't been unloaded, that occurs before I start so that I can put dirty things in the DW as I move along. I also try as much as possible to follow Trailrunner's methods - when I'm cooking, I read through my measured ingredients and figure out what should be added first such that I can reuse the same measuring spoons/cups/bowls, etc by doing dry ingredients, then wet ingredients, water then oil, etc.

In term so of general clean up, i have a shallow double sink. Not a great sink by today's standards and not something I'd ever used b/f moving here 17 years ago. However, I've come to love the double sink. The left side is really just a dish drainer for me. Whatever I hand wash (knives, things that aren't DW safe, etc), I then sort of randomly stack in my left sink to air dry. The right sink has my disposal and is used for washing or rinsing other items. my dirty dishes get scraped (not rinsed unless very smelly like fishy items or ketchup, which I cannot stand the smell of) then put in the DW.

As a busy mom of 4, I never find the perfect time to run my DW. I don't like to run overnight, b/c I don't have time to unload in the morning and HATE leaving any dirty dishes in my sink when I leave in the a.m. So usually, I wait until after breakfast to run my DW. I unload in the afternoon. I have a lot of plastic containers from my kids' lunches, and those never completely dry in the DW, so I use the left sink as a dryer. All plastic goes in there, then a few hours later when dry, I put away. I love NOT having it on the counter in plain view - for one, it would take up valuable counter space, and two, the visual clutter would drive me bonkers.

So while I know most people prefer a large single sink, for me personally, and my habits, I LOVE the double sink. Wet pots/pans and plastic can dry and drain directly into the drain of my left sink, out of sight, leaving my counters clear. Obviously not for everyone, but my system works for me. I should add that my mother HATES my double sink and wishes I had a single large sink like she does, but I HATE her large single sink. :) To each her own!


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RE: How do you wash your dishes, pans, and pots?

We have a double sink with a drainer that fits in one side. DH hated seeing drying racks on the counter and I was certainly not going to hand dry everything. Also, we'd need it just for the things that come out of the DW having collected a bit of water here and there-- kids' glasses, lids for pyrex containers, etc.


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