Thursday, October 7, 2010

Green Cleaners in the Kitchen

Baking soda is my best cleaning friend in the kitchen.  I use it to clean stains, cooked on crud on my glass top stove, in the frig to absorb odors (when I remember to do it) and down the drain before I pour the hot vinegar from cleaning my coffee maker into the sink.

I used to make dishwasher detergent when I made laundry soap - equal parts of washing soda, borax and powdered automatic dishwasher detergent.  Everything gradually started getting cloudy.  'They' say to use less if that happened. (Who are 'they', anyway?)  So I used less.  But Bill is from the 'if some works, more works better' school, so the glassware was getting really cloudy.  Not that I'm going to complain about him doing dishes every so often, but I had to come up with a better plan.  So now I have switched to 1 part baking soda to 1 part automatic dishwasher detergent and everything is getting sparkly clean again.

Automatic dishwasher detergent is good stuff, too.  When the baking soda won't remove cooked on food on the stovetop, a little detergent with a hot, wet cloth on top will do the trick.  I left it on overnight before on a particularly bad one, but it all wiped right off the next day.  I have also soaked dishes in hot water and dishwasher detergent to remove baked on stains.  Great stuff.  But next time I'm going to try something 'greener'.

I keep my labeled sprayers of vinegar/water, bleach/water and Dawn/water under the kitchen sink.  Then they're handy when I need them. I spray the cutting board, sink and my hands with bleach/water after I have been cutting up chicken.  I use the vinegar/water to help remove hard water stains, and the Dawn/ water for cleaning anywhere.

I have a foaming pump dispenser in the kitchen, too.  (1 part Dawn or dish soap of your choice, and 4 parts water).  Besides using it to wash my hands, I also use it when I need just a little soap on the dishcloth to wash a big pot.

Simple stuff, but it works.

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