Washing the blender jar can be a real chore, especially if foods have had time to harden. (And let’s be honest—who doesn’t procrastinate before taking on this annoying task?) Get a head start on the cleaning process by following this method: First, fill the dirty blender halfway with hot water and add a couple drops of liquid dish soap. Then, with the top firmly in place, turn the blender on high for 30 seconds. Most of the residue pours right out with the soapy water, and the blender jar need only be rinsed or lightly washed by hand. Another advantage to this technique: It keeps your fingers out of the jar and away from the sharp blade.
Cleaning basting brushes can be risky business, with lots of goo and grease clinging stubbornly to its bristles and just getting worse with every use. But in the test kitchen, we employ a clever technique to ensure a thorough cleaning job. First, wash the dirty brushes thoroughly with liquid dish soap and very hot water, then rinse well and shake dry. Place the brushes, bristles pointing down, into a cup and fill the cup with coarse salt until the bristles are covered. The salt draws moisture out of the bristles and keeps them dry and fresh between uses.
Some food processor lids have nonremovable sliding feed tubes that don’t get completely clean in the dishwasher because the pieces stick together. To prevent this, pull up the top portion of the lid and insert a chopstick between the tube and the lid to separate the pieces. Soapy water can now flow through the pieces, and the entire lid emerges from the dishwasher perfectly clean.