Off the Wall

Oven Broken? Try the Dishwasher

I hadn't regularly been watching Worst Cooks in America for fear I might see too much of myself in some of the contestants. When I did happen to catch one episode, I actually encountered a cooking technique that even I, in all my lazy unprofessionalism creative glory, had never heard of let alone attempted.

Dishwasher Fish! The seemingly feckless fellow proposed cooking salmon wrapped in tin foil by running it through one dishwasher cycle. "That's crazy!" I said out loud. No, that's awesome, I said in my head. This man is the culinary MacGyver.

Well, an hour of Internet research later, I realized I was perhaps giving this enterprising gentleman a bit too much credit as it seems cooking with your dishwasher is indeed practiced by a significant minority of Americans.

Although I have yet to find an entire blog or book dedicated to dishwasher cooking, I did stumble upon this nifty compilation of recipes. The author is serious. I think. I am, however, having some trouble understanding how lentil soup would work, and the idea of steaming a lobster so slowly to its roasted red death seems unnecessary.

The Food Network also offers this lovely recipe and instructions for Dishwasher Salmon with Dill, suggesting, perhaps, that contestant wasn't so crazypants after all. Shit, even Oprah endorses this method.

BTW, it isn't just aquatic proteins that can be prepared with your Kenmore. Even something as complicated as a multilayered, multitextured pasta dish is fair game; see this recipe for Florentine lasagna.

If I could make chocolate chip cookies in the dishwasher, I don't know if I would ever use my oven again. And Thanksgiving dinner? An all-in-one steamed feast courtesy of your Maytag? Amazing. Then maybe you could bake the dirt off the dishes in the oven.

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Joanna O'Leary