We don’t own a dishwasher, so our only option is to wash dishes by hand, but I think I may actually prefer this option! When I’ve seen cutlery and dishes that have been washed by a dishwasher in the past I haven’t been too impressed, and I know I’m not the only person who quite likes washing dishes by hand! Sure it can feel like a chore, but there’s something very satisfying when they are all clean and sparkling and you know you’ve done a good job!
So here is my routine:
First of all, I highly recommend rubber gloves. I use Marigold kitchen gloves. They do help to protect your hands. Not only from the dish soap, but the cutlery as well! I can recall an unhappy incident with a cheese slicer when I did not wear them!
It’s also absolutely worth investing in a good dish sponge. I recommend the Spontex ones with the ‘non-scratch’ scourer.
Another essential is a dish brush! I got mine from IKEA.
An important tip is to ensure you rinse the dishes before you begin. We do not want to have food floating around the washing up bowl whilst we are trying to get the dishes clean! Also, if you’ve got saucepans with things like Super Noodles or scrambled eggs in, soak them in water for a while before you begin! This will make them much easier to clean.
- Let’s start by giving the washing up bowl a quick rinse with cold water. Then squirt in some washing up liquid (not too much!) and fill up the bowl with water that is hot, but not too hot!
- Once the bowl is full, put all of the cutlery in at once, and push it towards the back of the bowl (remembering to wear your rubber gloves, of course!) This will ensure that there is room for the next step!
- We are now going to wash the glasses. It’s important to do these first because cutlery, glasses and cups have direct contact with your lips and should be the most clean. When washing glasses, thoroughly soak your dish sponge with water and submerge your glass in the washing up bowl. Then place the dish sponge inside the glass and use your dish brush to push it down into the glass. Be careful here, you do not want to break your glass. Using this method, give the glass a gentle scrub until clean. Once clean, gently plunge the glass into the water to give it a good rinse. (Avoiding your cutlery of course which should still be soaking at the back of the bowl.) Put your glass upside down on your dish rack so it can drain well.
- Get ready for the cups! I find that I do not need to use a dish brush for these because the opening is much larger and so there is less likelihood of them breaking. A dish sponge should suffice here!
- Now it’s time to wash the cutlery which by now should have had a good soak. When cleaning forks, use the corner of your sponge to get in between the prongs of the fork to remove any stubborn food! Take extra care with sharp knives, and put place them upside down in the cutlery tub of your rack so the sharp bit is pointing downwards.
- Next, we can move on to the plates. Ensure to get lots of bubbles onto your sponge. The more mess, the more bubbles needed! Give the plate a thorough clean, front and back and then plunge it into the water to rinse!
- When the plates are done, it’s time for the bowls. Clean with the dish sponge. Around and around in circular motions. Our dish rack allows placing bowls so they fit inside one another and they all rest on one of the ‘spokes’ of the rack. Sorry I don’t know the correct term! (See photo above)
- I like to use the leftover water to rinse out plastic bottles and food packaging that need to go in the recycling bin.
I hope you enjoyed reading my method. Tell me if you give it a try, or let me know what works for you!