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Ghastly Cooking Smells



Isn’t it ghastly when guests cook and create revolting smells which waft into my main house next door. Thank goodness their cooking area is an open verandah, so the smells can eventually dissipate. Currently I’m hosting some Japanese guests, and the cooking smells so vile… But we cannot demand they only cook clean, simple vegetarian meals, LOL… But it is so sickening for me to smell their cooking… Does it disturb other hosts too, the cooking smells of our guests?


IF I allowed cooking, it certainly would not bother me! But then, I’m a chef who cooks cuisines from around the world including Japanese(which btw is mostly vegetarian), northern & southern Chinese(ditto), Pacific islands, pan-European, northern and southern Indian (again mostly vegetarian), Latin and Central American, and pan North American.

If you’re so offended and sickened by anything other than ‘clean, simple vegetarian meals’, perhaps you should not allow cooking at all, since it obviously affects how you feel about your guests. Either than, or give up hosting anyone but “clean, simple (which I take means no spices) vegetarians”.


I’m largely vegetarian. I say 'largely because I do lapse if I’m in a restaurant and have the choice between boring roast vegetable or the luscious poached salmon.

But my meat-free cooking consists mainly of clean and simple dishes using fresh basic ingredients such as authentic curries, tagines & couscous, garlic laden Mediterranean food, and meat-free versions of dishes like cassoulets, bouillabaise etc,

I think that many people would find they can create ‘revolting cooking smells’, despite being clean simple, fresh and in many cases, culinary classics. To me, revolting cooking smells are those generated by greasy steaks and burgers, fries and nasty things like hot dogs and other over-manufactured ‘meats’.

One man’s meat … etc.

So I am never bothered by cooking smells although I tend to turn up my nose at a lot of greasy stuff so favoured by some Americans. Our rental is an entire home (apartment) but I’m right opposite (next door in the case of our second rental) so do get cooking smells but I don’t worry about it.

@KenH has the answer. If a host truly finds cooking smells ‘ghastly’, ‘vile’ and ‘sickening’ then it’s time to either arrange for better ventilation for the rental or stop allowing cooking altogether.


Do you have a good extraction system,?


Like @KenH said, the only way to not have smells is to not allow cooking. My last guests specifically rented my unit so they could prepare “healthy meals” and one guest has a food allergy. I don’t know what they prepared but good golly did the downstairs kitchen stink when they left. I’m glad I could leave windows and doors open for a a while to air out the unit.

Similar to @jaquo’s observation, My guest said something about preparing vegetarian meals. So I’m not sure that healthy vegetarian meals means no strong smells.

I live in the southeastern US. The smell of chicken or thin breaded pork chops fried in a cast iron skillet is heavenly to me (but you must clean the pan quickly after it cools).

I have a friend who loves kimchi — not me! In nursing school I was the only NON-Italian working in a restaurant, they didn’t understand why I didn’t love the smell of garlic. Beauty (and good food smells) is the eye (nose) of the beholder.


Ah you’re a chef, so you’d be all for the spices and business that people do these days to their food… LOL… People have to eat, and they stay longer now that there is cooking available, so we have to weigh things up don’t we. When I didn’t offer cooking facilities, people stayed for only 2 nights or so. Now I get longer stays, less cleaner, less hassle.

And I’m glad that it’s OUTSIDE, this was a good idea, hey!


Ah, so your guests are cooking outside on a grill?


I honestly think there is some horrible conspiracy with our guests, as they almost always seem to cook bacon. Oh my goodness, the scintillating smell of bacon, bacon, bacon. With weak knees and slightly watering mouth I tell my husband that bacon is bad for us. With smoldering distain he turns a cold shoulder to my argument and tries his best to make nice with our guests!


The downfall of every committed vegetarian! Bacon is totally irresistible. :slight_smile:


Nope, no grill. There is an electric cook-top, just a 2 burner, which we plug in (lucky there’s an outdoor power point hey!) and an electric frypan. I just don’t use the verandah if I have guests staying, I use the front door instead. Easy!


Remove cooking as an amenity.
Or add a rule

The cooking of highly spiced foods such as curries are not allowed as they linger in furnishings and on walls.


Do you travel much? People have been using some of these spices for thousands of years. I read somewhere that they found traces of turmeric in 4,000 year old Indian cooking pots.


I was going to pick you as a Kiwi living in Oz. It seems you live not too far from my side of Melbourne. It must get a bit cold for your guests to cook outside in winter. Or is that the point? :wink:


There used to be a funny UK comedy program “The Khumars” (or that might have been the spin off) in which Indians went for “a British” asking for the food to be as spice free and bland as possible. Perhaps a sign that says “Traditional British food only!” would send the right message?


If you don’t like the smell of other people’s cooking, then don’t allow people to cook at your listing, or provide them with indoor cooking facilities so the smell doesn’t waft into your house.

What do you mean by ‘clean, simple, vegetarian meals’? Lots of vegetarian food can have strong smells such as that cooked with garlic or spices. Or if it is fried.

My shared accommodation has an open plan kitchen/living space so I have it in my house rules not to cook fish/curries on the hob, as the strong smell permeates the room, even though I have an extraction hood for the cooker. (And of course I make sure I do the same when I have guests).

I have guests from all over the world who cook food from their home countries and I find it fascinating. I wouldn’t ever be so rude as to call the smells from their cooking vile.


So why are you complaining? And rudely too.


I remember it well @JamJerrupSunset. It’s hilarious.

The sketch parodies the popular British pastime of a certain type of person in the 1980’s and 1990’s who used to enjoy ‘going out for an Indian’ after the pubs are shut. Where they thought it was funny to mock the poor Indian staff, their accents, food and culture.


Almost everything can be cooked in the oven and it smells far less. Perhaps organise the facilities to deprioritise frying and grilling which are the most smelly e.g. lose the electric frying pan.


The cloying, dirty fat smell of bacon makes me heave. A clean grassy steak would be far more likely to turn me. I love spicy food but it should never be cooked anywhere near soft furnishings as the smell ruins them - an open plan disaster. Different horses for different courses.


straight in with the old ‘perhaps you should give up hosting’ line!

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