A mingling ritual at casual parties is certainly doing the dishes.
Cleaning the dishes comes in play before and after a party. So it works best when the host is prepared. I compiled my top three tips to best distribute the work load.
1 | Do not accumulate before the party
Clean all the dishes you used to prepare your meals. I suggest you do the dishes by hand at this stage. The idea is to always start your event with an empty dishwasher and uncluttered counter space.
After the first course, simply put everything in the dishwasher and your counter will stay spotless. If you own an ultra quiet dishwasher, run a washing cycle as soon as the dishwasher reached the 75% full mark. Then you will be ready to start a full cycle with the main course dishes at the end of the event.
2 | Let your friends help you if they offered
If you host a casual event with 8 or more friends, usually 1 or 2 friends will instinctively start to do the dishes while you are cooking and plating the meals. Etiquette wise, it is best to not ask for help unless you are in trouble. If there is no dishwasher, guests should definitely share the cleaning chores.
When you are with good friends, they will start before you even noticed, so leave the dish liquid soap near the sink. Prepare a basket with your best tea towels. Store the basket under neat the sink until someone started doing the dishes. This way your guests do not feel obligated to clean up.
If you own a dishwasher, make sure to tell your friends that they do not have to wash everything by hand. I usually told my guests to simply rinse the plates. I found out that two runs of dishwasher are plenty to clean all the dinnerware and serving ware for a twelve-guest dinner party. You start one before you go to bed, the other before breakfast and no one could tell you hosted a big party the night before.
3 | Getting rid of the cooking smells
Open the window to change the air before your guests arrive. Make sure to cook with the fan on at the appropriate level.
Scented candles, potpourris, diffusers and air fresheners come handy. Try to avoid sweet scents before a dinner party. I found out that fruits and vegetables scents do miracles in the kitchen. Just like perfume on you, scented candles and air fresheners should not overpower the room. And now, the air refresher is coupled with the dish soap bottle.
Introducing the new Dawn Simple Pleasures
The dish soap industry is competitive and they market innovative features to sell more of their brand. Procter & Gamble just introduced Dawn Simple Pleasures, a Dawn dish liquid bottle with an air freshener. For over a decade, I trust Dawn to wash my dishes because I think it delivers the best cleaning power on the market. I am curious to see how good are their air fresheners?
A two in one product is handy because it does not overcrowd your counter. You just peel off the seal to enjoy the air freshener. There is need to plug it in, to refill it or to put some oil on it. Dawn Simple Pleasures can become your affordable aromatherapy solution while you are doing the dishes. I still need to smell it to make up my mind about the benefits of this feature.
Dawn Simple Pleasures is only available in the United Stated for the moment. I expect the fruity scents, Lemon & Tangerine or Apple & Pear, to be the best buys. The third scent is Water Lilly & Jasmine. Smells are a personal experience, so trust your nose. And if you are happy with the smell after a while, know that the air freshener section is removable.
If you tried Dawn Simple Pleasures, I am interested to hear your views about this new product.
Learn more: Web site of Dawn Simple Pleasures by Procter & Gamble
Photo credit: Just a little thing by wardi on Flickr
Bettina ForgetSeptember 28, 2007 at 08:54
Timely advice! I’m hosting a dinner party for six tonight. “Start the event with an EMPTY dishwasher” – why didn’t I think of that?
Thanks for the great tips!