19th November 2015
Not many people give much thought to their kitchen wares, but when you think about it, we use them quite a lot; preparing and eating food several times a day and hopefully cooking lots of healthy meals on hobs and in ovens. But just how should we look after our purchases so that we get the most out of them? Read on to find out how!
Stainless steel knives and forks should always be hand washed and dried. Putting them in a dishwasher is ok once in a while, but if you want to maintain shine then hand washing and drying is the way to go. Use hot soapy water (washing-up liquid will do) and dry thoroughly with a cloth. If you have got any pesky stains or spotting, which is the first signs of rust, soak in vinegar or apply lemon juice to the stain and voila, it should be gone!
If you want no-hassle, easy cleaning utensils, opt for silicone, which we especially love for baking cupcakes as there’s no mixture stuck on the tin, or spatulas which won’t scratch your beautiful non-stick pans.
Cast iron pans are quite hardy characters but you want to make sure with these pans (as with all dishes!) that you wash and dry them not too long after using them. You don’t want them to have a layer of old food that takes a ton of elbow grease to remove and then end up chipping their coating after a lot of tough scrubbing.
When you notice scratches or a deterioration in sparkle, re-season your pan by coating it in vegetable oil before cooking in the oven at the highest setting before removing any leftover oil with kitchen towel which you can then throw in the bin (NEVER down the drain, which clogs your pipes and you will be making a call to us to get you out of that pickle!)
Wood is a great tool and alternative to metal utensils. When cleaning wooden spoons and chopping boards, don’t leave them to soak as this can cause the grain to split and crack. Also, as with iron pans, you can smother your wooden utensils in oil before removing any residue with a cloth to keep your wood clean and smooth. If chopping boards or spoons are stained with sauces or brightly coloured food, then apply half a chopped lemon to stains and scrub until clean.
With all the cleaning your washing machine does, it’s bound to get smelly sooner or later. Take the filter on the inside door and the drawer out and clean with hot soapy water. You can do the same for the rubber door band, which is always a magnet for mould and mildew.
Once you have washed the drawer, pour some white vinegar in both the drawer and drum and run a wash which will kill any bacteria and make things a whole lot fresher! This also prevents against a build-up of soap powder and detergent which hinders the efficiency of your machine. We also advise running a white vinegar wash every month to keep your washer in tip top condition. You can also leave the door open after washing a load to air out the drum and prevent mould or any other nasties.
These small tricks will keep your washing machine running smoothly, but remember, if you have any other problems with your washing machine, such as loud, clunky noises during its spin, and you have tried the above, then it is best to call out an engineer.
You can tell your dishwasher isn’t working as well as it should when your pots and pans aren’t as clean as normal or you notice traces of washing crystals or dishwasher soap. It’s so annoying, isn’t it?
As with the washing machine, pop some vinegar in the drawer for one cleaning cycle and this should sort it out any nasty smells and unblock your machine.
As we have mentioned white vinegar already, we thought it is so great it needs its own headline. Instead of using harsh chemicals when cleaning, just stock up on several bottles of white vinegar and you can use it for multiple cleaning jobs, including kitchen worktops, walls and tiles as well as the inside of fridges and microwaves.
If your blender or food processor is a little whiffy or your kettle has some stubborn hard water marks on it, just wash with hot soapy water, scrub any stubborn marks with a cloth soaked in white vinegar and rinsing clean.
White vinegar… simply a dream!
So there you go. With a little TLC, your kitchen gadgets will work as they should for many more years to come!
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