Well here’s a question to ponder during your Monday meetings. Dishwasher cooking—is it a thing? You bet. Consider this mildly viral video from German blogger COOK WITH ME.AT that came out this past Friday, instructing viewers on how to cook a steak to perfection in the comfort of one's home appliance:
Listen to that groovy music as an anonymous hand casually slips a vacuum-sealed rib eye into a dishwashing rack alongside the usual suspects, like a “plate.” The instructions are simple: You let it glug in there for ninety minutes. Take it out. Mmm. Admire your dishwasher steak. Dab it dry. Put some olive oil on a pan and sear it at high heat. Add butter. Baste the baby! Leave to rest for five minutes. Slice it. Season it. How convenient; two birds, one stone. Well, you've done it. You've made the dishwasher steak.
I don't mean to be dismissive about dishwasher cooking, which, when I first heard about it twelve hours ago, I found an ontologically bizarro practice. It's "a thing." I’ve been revisiting this 2013 NPR paean to dishwasher cooking, wherein Michaeleen Doucleff has fond memories of her mother sticking a salmon in the family dishwasher to the terror of her daughters, only for them to be amazed at the resultant slab of seafood, tender and moist. Huh. Clean a plate, serve some fish. In fact, there's a great wealth of foods, from green beans to lobster, that cook quite nicely in the confines of a dishwasher—as long as they're sealed in airtight jars that shield them from dish soap.
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My question stands: Have you ever cooked anything in a dishwasher? Please let me know in the comments.
Mayukh Sen is a James Beard Award-winning food and culture writer in New York. His writing has appeared in the New York Times, the New Yorker, Bon Appetit, and elsewhere. He won a 2018 James Beard Award in Journalism for his profile of Princess Pamela published on Food52.