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A Guide to Removing Kitchen Odours

Removing Kitchen Odours

Strong flavours in cooking can be associated with strong smells. So, here’s our guide to some of the strongest smelling ingredients found in restaurants, and some top tips for removing kitchen odours.

Strongest Smelling Foods

Here are some of the biggest olfactory offenders you can find in the kitchen.

Century Eggs

A staple of Eastern cuisine, Century Eggs are famous for their beauty…and their powerful pong. These were discovered in attempts to transport fragile eggs over distances without the food going rotten or being smashed. Travellers sealed the eggs in clay and left them to ferment for months. This causes the egg to congeal into an almost sweet pudding-like consistency. Considered a delicacy for some, others find it a little more difficult to get past their sulphurous smell. But they’re perfect as a side or a potent ingredient in a number of dishes.

Used in: Salads, congees, and most often with rice and chicken porridge.


These are classed as a superfood, but any chef slicing into this fruit is going to find themselves booed out of their own kitchen. Covered in a thick, thorny skin that hides protein-rich flesh, the Asian fruit has been charitably described as smelling like feet crossed with rotting flesh. But when it comes to bringing volume and exotic flavour to meals, it simply can’t be beat.

Used in: Desserts, cakes and buns, and thick, fruity smoothies.


Cousin to the semi-legendary Lutefisk, a small mouthful of this pickled herring packs a mighty punch and has an odour to match. Caught fish are brined and fermented almost to the point of rotting, whereupon they produce their characteristic strong, acidic smell. Very much an acquired taste, these are best served with simplistic nordic fare or as statement piece starter.

Used in: Platters presented in a well-ventilated areas alongside crispbreads, or with a compliment of onions, cheese and potatoes.

How to Remove Smells

Whether you are dealing with strong ingredients or just carrying out day-to-cooking, managing the odours in your kitchen can become a concern. But there are some simple tips and tricks to help counteract any offensive smells:

Old School De-odorizer

A little bit of low-fi chemical wizardry can take the sting out of any smells. Boil water and mix in some cinnamon or baking soda to help counteract any odours that may make their way from the food.

Canopy Fan Maintenance

Your kitchen’s fan is a fantastic, built-in way to be able to clear the air when it’s most needed. But to get the most out of your equipment, regular methodical ventilation cleaning is an absolute must. Duct cleaning checkups can make sure that any offensive odours are managed as soon as possible.

Purchase a Purifier or go Au-Naturale

If odour management becomes a pressing concern,you can choose to purchase an air purifier from any number of outlets. Or, a less high-tech option is making sure that your kitchen is properly ventilated. Make sure windows are opened and airflow is considered – which overlaps with many of the tips, and tricks in our previous blog for taking the heat out of your kitchen.

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