Dishwashers are no longer just for washing things.
Dishwashers are no longer just for washing things.

Bizarre dishwasher cookery hack

Put away your pots and switch off your ovens. While you're at it, just dump your barbecue on the kerb 'cause it's council pick-up this week and you wont be needing it anymore.

'Dishwasher cuisine' is here, it is not a joke, and we are all being encouraged to try it out.

I realise this looks like trickery, but people around the world are literally stacking their dishwashers with filthy crockery, jamming in packets of salmon and beans, and topping it all off with a Powerball rinse tablet.

 

Somewhere in there is a five course meal.
Somewhere in there is a five course meal.

 

Possibly the greatest invention in the history of the galaxy, dishwashers allow the homeowner to maintain an air of culinary competency and cleanliness, despite the literal bomb site they created moments prior.

I have never, in my wildest dreams, considered the fact that my dishwasher could be used to prepare a meal.

To be honest, in my wildest dreams, I'm usually a Victoria's Secret model, running from a deadly python, in nothing but a pair of angel wings.

But, I digress.

The point is, the thought of a dishwasher doing literally anything except, well, washing a dish, has always been inconceivable.

 

Oh no, she ruined dinner! If only there was a device close by that could help …
Oh no, she ruined dinner! If only there was a device close by that could help …

 

But, as it turns out, I'm a fool, and people are cooking things like poached prawns, lasagne and cous cous in their 5-star rated Mieles.

There are entire YouTube channels dedicated to imparting the wisdom of dishwasher cooking, there was even a Mythbusters episode dedicated to it.

What's more, they're then putting this food inside of their bodies, and not contracting salmonella.

 

There are entire YouTube channels dedicated to 'Dishwasher Cooking'. Picture: YouTube
There are entire YouTube channels dedicated to 'Dishwasher Cooking'. Picture: YouTube

 

An experiment, conducted this month by Australian consumer advocacy group Choice, looked into this bizarre phenomenon to determine whether or not it was safe to cook stuff in your dishwasher.

The company's white goods tester whipped up a meal of honey soy salmon, coconut rice, an Asian style spinach and mushrooms, and a darling little custard and fruit compote.

The verdict? "Delicious!"

HOW IT WORKS

In order to cut through all that grime and grease on our dirty crockery, dishwashers are designed with a heating element inside.

Once a cycle is activated, the unit can reach temperatures of about 62 degrees, which is high enough to cook certain proteins and vegetables, but low enough to not shatter glasses or other fragile items stacked inside.

Many experts have likened 'dishwasher cookery' to the sous vide method - a French style of cooking where food is vacuum-sealed in a plastic bag, submerged in a warm water bath, and cooked over a long period of time.

Unlike a sous vide machine, your garden variety dishwasher can really only cook a handful of prawns or a fillet of fish.

In other words, don't slow cooking a lamb shoulder or giving your Christmas ham a crack in this thing.

Experts recommend the dishwasher chef to only attempt meals that are safe to eat if they're not totally cooked through.

Basically, foods that are "forgiving if time and temperature are a little bit out".

While I understand the basic concept of this method, I can't come at the bit where your dinner is floating around in filthy dish water and soap.

Choice agreed: "The thought of your dinner soaked with wash water, detergent and gunk from your dinner plates is pretty unappealing".

Instead, they suggest putting your meal in several zip lock bags or pop it in an airtight jar or dishwasher safe container.

Other people recommend wrapping your meal in four or five sheets of aluminium foil. That seems a bit risky to me.

The report also recommended cooking your dinner in a dishwasher packed with dirty dishes, because "the fuller your machine is, the more stable the temperature, and stable temperatures make cooking easier."

 

Protein, veggies and soap suds!
Protein, veggies and soap suds!

 

Oh, wow. Doesn't that look appetising.
Oh, wow. Doesn't that look appetising.

 

BUT … WHY?

It's a great question when you probably have a stove, an oven, a microwave and a mobile with which to order Uber Eats.

Well, Choice has a long list of reasons why you should give this unconventional technique a try.

"You've got to run the dishwasher anyway, but the rising cost of electricity means you don't want to run two appliances at once," the report said.

That's a bit stingy, if you ask me.

"You want to cook for a large group, and the roominess of your dishwasher means you can cook everything at the same time," it suggested.

I wouldn't have any friends left if I tried to cook them an entire meal in my dishwasher.

"You're a uni student living in a share house, everyone's drunk, and it seems like a good idea at the time," it offered.

Yeah, I'll pay that.

 

"Babe, I know I'm three bottles deep, but this thing might actually cook our Mie Goreng."

 

TRY IT YOURSELF - IF YOU DARE

For those game enough to try this at home, take comfort in the fact that I did it, and I am still alive to tell the tale.

The incubation period for salmonella poisoning is typically 72 hours though, but so far, so good!

Simply pick your piece of protein (salmon, prawns, chicken, etc.), marinate it and chuck it in a couple of zip lock bags.

Submerge those in water, to force all the air out and lock that sucker up.

Then place your wrapped-up meat onto a rack in your dishwasher, where it will essentially poach in the heat until firm.
"The long cycle time also gave the cooking juices a chance to develop in flavour, and it makes an excellent finishing sauce when poured over the fish," the Choice report said.

 

You'll want to make sure the lock is done up, lest you end up with filthy fish …
You'll want to make sure the lock is done up, lest you end up with filthy fish …

Next, throw your vegetables in a jar and fill it with water and seasoning (beans, carrots, things that don't need too much heat to cook).

You can even (allegedly) cook rice, couscous and pasta in the dishwasher. It takes a few cycles though, so you'll need a bit of patience.

Make sure to add water to these elements also, to assist in the cooking process.

 

Fill a jar with veggies, water, herbs and seasoning for a quick dish.
Fill a jar with veggies, water, herbs and seasoning for a quick dish.

Chuck your dishwasher on a long cycle, crack a bottle of wine and pray you sealed everything up tightly.

It won't be Michelin star quality, but it'll be cooked, and you'll have a great story to tell your mates.

 

Here's me saying a silent prayer this doesn’t kill me.
Here's me saying a silent prayer this doesn’t kill me.

 

If you still don't believe that dishwasher cuisine is a thing, may I present the Queen, Oprah Winfrey, and her recipe for poached salmon and noodle parcels, prepared in the dishwasher.

Why Oprah would have any need for something as basic as a dishwasher in her house is beyond me, but there you go.

 

Tucking into the fruits of my labour.
Tucking into the fruits of my labour.

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