Everyone today is pressed for time and looking for quick and easy ways to get things done - particularly cooking. Even if you love to cook, you may find that after preparing a home cooked meal after a long day's work, cleaning up the kitchen is the last thing you want to do. Wouldn't you love to have a self-cleaning kitchen!
How to Create a Self-Cleaning Kitchen?
Here are 6 ways to make your cleanup a breeze:
1. Remember your mom's advice "clean up as you go"? As usual, mom was right and this is the key to less cleaning later. It always makes things easier to begin cooking in a clean kitchen. Try filling your dish pan with hot, soapy water and have a sponge ready before you start to cook. Now you are ready to easily wipe up spills on your counter or stove before they have a chance to dry and become hard to remove. You can also toss your pots and pans into the hot water to soak while you are eating. Even if you are using a dishwasher, baked on food can be hard to remove.
2. Keep in mind most foods don't need to be cooked at the highest temperature and a medium to medium-high setting is probably all you need. This tip will help you avoid burning food which is much harder to remove from the pan. Also, use a tall pot and watch your temperatures when boiling pasta or other liquids. Boil-overs make cleaning your stovetop much more difficult.
3. While cooking, it is easy to become distracted and forget about something on the stove or in the oven. You may think you will check that food in a minute, but do use a timer. I can't count how many things have burned in that "last minute" when I didn't use my timer!
4. A great way to eliminate kitchen clean up is to make simple, one-dish meals. When you can toss all of the ingredients into one pot or Dutch oven, you eliminate having to clean many pots and cooking utensils later. Try a cast iron pot or Dutch oven because these pans allow you to brown the food first in these pots on your stove and then pop them into the oven to finish cooking. Using a crockpot or slow-cooker is another great modern time and cleanup saver. Toss all of the ingredients into the crockpot and cleanup is a snap. Try spraying the inside of your crockpot with cooking spray and you will find they clean easily. New crockpots have removable crocks that can be put in the dishwasher too!
5. Take advantage of the many prepared ingredients available in grocery stores today. You can find just about any vegetable prewashed, cut and ready to go. Frozen vegetables are also quick, convenient and can be kept on hand in your freezer. Use quick and easy recipes that can be prepared easily with a few convenient ingredients. You can toss some vegetables together with precooked chicken or beef strips, throw on a sauce and assemble a meal in minutes with minimal mess.
6. Use cooking gadgets that really do save you time and make preparing foods easier. We have all bought gadgets that promised to make food prep easy and but actually created more work and another utensil to clean. One essential for a busy cook is a good food processor that can do much of the chopping, slicing and prepping with only one bowl to clean.