Last week (maybe two weeks ago), we had some friends over for a semi-potluck dinner. It was quite delightful as these are friends we live close to, but our busy schedules tend to keep us apart for longer stretches than we like. Here was our menu:
Course 1: Cesar salad with homemade dressing
Course 2: Homemade veggie lasagna and red wine
Course 3: (brought by our dear friends) Homemade brownies with Izzy's ice cream and white wine
Everything was delicious! And I'll take this time to tell you my darling friend's brilliant idea for pre-portioning brownies. She used her muffin tin (standard size). Duh, right?! Brownies don't rise like muffins do, so you just fill each cup about 1/3 full, bake monitoring the brownies carefully (don't want 'em to burn), and let cool before removing from the tin.
Once our friends left, however, a rather horrifying stack of dishes appeared. *Knowing how much I hate doing dishes, I will never ever ever ask company to assist in doing the dishes. So anyone how comes (or has come) to my house, don't feel bad. That said, I'm happy to assist others if they request help with dishes while I am enjoying their kitchen.* It was late and we were tired so we called it a night and went to bed. Normally, this doesn't bother me. I'm very comfortable leaving dishes for
- Before I even begin to fill the sink, I arrange/organize my dishes according to their shape and size, as this dictates the order in which they'll be cleaned. For example, all the big plates go into one stack, small plates in another, cereal bowls in another, and tupperware is stacked according to shape and size. Not only does this let me see how much of everything I have to wash, I can maximize our counter space (we generally have a pot still on the stove, our pull-out cutting board out and full, and/or a few dishes still on the table).
- This next step might be different for some of you, but we have one giant sink (never again!). So we have a plastic tub that sits in our sink that we fill to wash dishes. After sorting the dishes, I put all the silverware in the tub, throw in some dish soap, and start the water.
- As the tub is filling up, I wash the silverware and place it in the drying rack.
- Next come big and flat items - biggest plates first, smallest plates second.
- Then soup/salad bowls, followed by cereal bowls.
- Small tupperware containers and their lids.
- Big mixing bowls, baking pans, pots, etc.
This system allows me to maximize and creatively fill the space of our drying rack. If my drying rack is full and I still have a number of dishes left, I'll let my first round dry and put them away, coming back later to do another round. Now, if you were to talk to Mr. S, he'd tell you a completely different method for washing dishes (cleanest to dirtiest). There isn't a right or a wrong, simply a different.
How do you tackle dishes? Do you spend any time sorting and organizing before you start, or do you just dig right in?