Areille - the Lioness of God

Tuesday, July 20, 2010

Who is doing the dishes?

I always knew using the dishwasher was a waste of water and electricity, but the ease of it (or so we thought) made us frequent users. Recently, I have been cooking a lot, like nearly 5-6 times in a week. Which meant, nearly every single day the dishwasher would run. I would have prep dishes, dishes I cooked with, dishes we ate on, dishes from any leftovers in the fridge & the dishes we took to work for lunch. This was a daily load. And then, came the awakening. My mom visited, and for 11 whole days we didn't use the dish washer even once. She washed dishes as she cooked which compelled us to wash our own plates and cups. Observing her I realized, it shouldn't be that hard to do .. and we should really be saving all that water and electricity. I took the oath, will try and not use dishwasher for everyday stuff. Only probably when we have company over. What I have learnt is that I have become a lot more efficient with my dish usage while cooking. I don't unnecessarily take out a lot of prep dishes cause I know I will have to hand wash them all. Also, I clean as I cook. As the onions sautee, I will rinse the bowl in which I kept the chopped onions. By the time my dal was simmering with the spices, I would have finished washing the pressure cooker in which I had cooked that dal. And when I am done topping that sabji with coriander leaves, the cutting board and knife is immediately rinsed. I am absolutely loving how efficient I have become. I have 2 plates out in the drying rack and we now use the same 2 plates for dinner everyday. Not only have I now saved electricity and precious water, but time too in putting dishes back and taking dishes out. I have read somewhere that on an average dishwashers use 40 liters of water per load .. Yikes! I am glad to have made this little change!


  • At 7/22/2010 8:05 AM, Blogger Maddy said…

    Great job g! I have never used the dishwasher in my 2.5yrs of US stay.. for the same reasons. The amount of waste is just way to much!
    Cleaning up while cooking makes everything easier. I used to have music on while cooking/cleaning to was never bored :D

  • At 7/26/2010 1:14 PM, Blogger Charanya said…

    My dishwasher is mainly a drying and storage unit for me! Hate using it! Plus it doesn't remove tough stains well which you are gonna have to handwash anyways!Similar to Maddy, I usually turn something on in Hulu or youtube while cooking and dishwashing - so the time just flies by without the task ever being dreary! :)

  • At 7/27/2010 9:09 AM, Blogger G3 said…

    In college, I too used to use it as a drying and storage unit .. and somehow when I started earning ... I thought it was ok to use it. But ya .. now I am back. So taking your suggestions .. I either switch on the TV .. or just get P to do them! ;-)

  • At 7/27/2010 2:15 PM, Anonymous radhe said…

    nice post g3. I totally agree with all your points.

    one heads-up though: wait till u have kid(s)...then, see if u can still do the dishes w/out using dishwasher. It is not easy to cook/wash dishes when the toddler is running around in the living room/kitchen (this is after parents/in-laws leave for desh).

    pls dont think i'm being pessimistic, just being practical.

  • At 8/13/2010 8:38 AM, Anonymous Ritu said…

    Just to give a different perspective - I am an avid dish washer user, that is the only way I do dishes because I HATE doing dishes. Also I love that after the dish washer is done, the dishes are steamed and they come out nice and sanitized whereas when I hand wash them the sponge is full of bacteria(because I don't replace it every month) the dish is not really clean. So ur blog really got me thinking and I did some research and found this article - it talks about a study that compares people handwashing and using the dish washer and it explains that the new energy star dishwashers use only upto 4.25 gallons of water and much less electricity. I cook 5-6 times a week as well. In our house the dish washer runs ever 2-3 days only when it is completely full in fact sometimes there isn't enough room and I get upset that I have to hand wash 2 or 3 dishes :). And I also don't use that many dishes for prep work, when I cut veggies they just sit on the cutting board until they go in the cooking pot. So dish washers might not be as bad as u think :) moms and all aren't used to using dish washers so they def think it's a pain to use it(at least that's what my mom said everytime I told her to put it in the dish washer). Again this is just a view on the flip side no intention to be pessimistic or anything.

  • At 9/03/2010 8:43 AM, Blogger G3 said…

    Ritu - I guess I have to read more about it. No clue if the effects are negated with the new Energy Star Appliances. But one thing I have noticed is that I can't put dishes directly into the dishwasher. There is a certain amt. of rinsing which is needed otherwise you end up with dirty dishes at the end of the load. And I have noticed that if I just spend few mins. more after rinsing, I would be done with washing them. I do agree that the hot steamy dishes are a nice feel, but I am pretty sure that step is very energy draining. So even when I used to use the dishwasher, I let the dishes air dry. Again, technology is definitely advancing .. so who knows.


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