Remember, I’m doing this blog for beginner cooks, so I’m starting with the basics. So, here are a few words about taking care of the dishes. First, get some soap or detergent. It doesn’t matter what kind. I just get the cheapest. Second, buy some sponges. For me there’s only one kind: that’s the sponge with the soft sponge on one side and the rough sandpaper-like surface on the other. The rough side is good for ceramic dishware, which is why I recommended getting that kind. It should also work on plastics, but don’t use too much muscle because it might scratch the plastic.
Dishwashing detergent or soap: You only need a couple drops at a time on your sponge. The liquid does NOT sanitize your dishes. It simply makes it easy to remove food from your dishes. Don’t worry, the dishes will be clean and sanitary if you get all the food off and place them in a dish drainer to air dry.
First of all, wash your dishes right after eating, before things get too cold! If things like pasta, rice, cheese, and similar goopy things are allowed to get cold they’ll stick tightly to your dishes! If this happens, run some hot water in your sink over the dishes and let them sit for a few minutes.
The magic of using a Scotch Brite type of sponge is that it’s extremely good at unsticking stuck food. You only need a dab of dish soap or detergent. Put the dab on the sponge, not on the dish. Rub. Use some water. You can tell the dish is clean when you can run your hand over the surface and not feel anything but the smooth plate, bowl, or saucepan.
I also recommend getting a dish drainer for two reasons: It’s less hassle than wiping your dishes, and you don’t want to put a towel on them after washing them because maybe you wiped up a spill earlier and forgot, so you might get that stuff onto your clean dishes!