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Water Conserving Cleanup

Cathy Lea.
Some water poured into a hot pan after serving a meal heats the water and helps keep any remaining food from drying. If the pan is really dirty or greasy the hot water serves as the initial rinse and is refilled to make the hot wash water.

When you are ready to wash up, add a touch of liquid dish soap to the pan and stir to get suds enough to wash the dinner dishes. If the water has cooled too much after dinner, heat it a little on the stove, but do not let it boil.

I rinse and stack everything in the sink such that washing or rinsing the first thing cascades the soap or clean water down to the next thing. Forks, spoons and knives are washed first and the water is caught in the bowls or plates. When the bowls and plates are washed the water flows down to the pan. When everything is washed this way all of the soap does double or triple duty by washing more than one thing before going down the drain.

This method uses amazingly little water and can provide enough suds to clean all of the dinner dishes and flatware in a single pan. Simply rinse with clean water to complete the wash.

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