Incredible but true! in fact it works so well that you don’t even need to use a scourer.
Here’s how it works.
Anything that is water soluble will just rinse straight off with water. That just leaves you with the oils and fats from the food.
There are two ways to attack this:
Firstly, use a detergent. The detergent molecules wrapped themselves around the fat, form themselves into micelles, and then the water can carry them away.
The second approach is to use an alkaline substance to convert the oils and fats into soaps. And this of course is how soap is made – you react fat with caustic soda.
So it’s simple. Run some hot water into the sink, and as you do it throw in some washing soda – a heaped tablespoon should be plenty. Now, just let it soak for about half an hour, so that it cools down a bit. Now, just lift the plates out, rinse them under cold water, and Bob’s your uncle.
You will be amazed at how well it works.
By the way, the same approach will work with detergent, although not as well. Letting the dishes soak in hot water for half an hour allows the detergent molecules to do their stuff. The thing that separates the detergent from the washing soda is baked on cheese (e.g. from nachos) for which the washing soda leaves detergent in its wake.