Long ago, when the Damsel was but a teenager, she helped her aunt clean a house she was about to move into. (Hi Aunt Linda! In Mongolia!) The kitchen had a stove hood that was grease-encrusted, and the auntie showed the young Damsel how to clean it with ammonia.
The ammonia worked really well but the Damsel hated using it because of the smell. Oh, the smell. Like sticking your head in an old-school diaper pail. YUCK. And the Damsel would like to say to people who market ammonia as “lemon fresh scent” or some such: “LIES. NOTHING BUT LIES.”
At the Cottage By The Mountains, there is no yucky stove hood. Indeed there is no stove hood at all because of its type. But there are grills that sit on the stovetop, and there are a lot of messy children. Over the years, the Damsel has spent a great deal of time scrubbing those grills. It was super hard work, and even after a huge effort, the grills still didn’t look pristine.
As if anything looks pristine at the Cottage. Just keeping it real.
At one point the Damsel even asked her Knight if he would spray paint the grills (normally gray but covered with black grodies) with black high-temp engine paint. Seemed like a good idea at the time. He cruelly refused.
So she half-heartedly scrubbed the grills every few weeks, but never felt happy inside about it. Then she remembered her auntie, and learned about a special trick to do with ammonia.
Put the grills (or any item with baked-on grease that’s small enough) into a plastic bag. Pour in some ammonia…maybe a cup or so. Close it tightly and let it sit overnight. The ammonia doesn’t have to cover the yucky parts. It’s the fumes–oh the fumes–that work the magic.
The Damsel has only tried this with stovetop grills, but she assumes that anything that wouldn’t be harmed by ammonia would be ok to do this on. (Remember to keep ammonia and bleach far far away from each other.)
The next day, the Damsel braced herself and opened the bag. Once the terrible stench was rinsed away, she started working on the grill. Now let us be clear. The crud didn’t just rinse off, but wow. Nearly all of it came off with VERY light scrubbing, and the few stubborn specks came off with comparatively little effort. The Damsel felt like skipping and singing.
The dream of actually having a nice looking stove suddenly seemed possible–a thing the Damsel didn’t think would happen in this lifetime.
This is her wish for you.