Kitchen hacks:

No more tears when cutting onions

Onions are cut on a cutting board at a BLANCO sink

Crying when chopping onions

Tip 1: Chopping onions has to be one of the most tedious tasks when cooking. You need an extra chopping board for this purpose. This is because the onion odour lingers on the cut surfaces and can soon transfer to other foods. However, the real reason why people dislike cutting onions is that it irritates their eyes. You find your eyes starting to water after just a few seconds. Some people resort to donning diving goggles! They might look pretty eccentric, but they do the trick. If you don’t want to look like a deep sea diver in the kitchen, you could either get a vegetable chopper for cooking prep, or try this simple trick - hold a mouthful of water in your mouth when you’re chopping onions.

Garlic lying on a chopping board, next to a white BLANCO AXIA sink

Getting rid of that garlic smell from your hands

Tip 2: Stainless steel soap is a fantastic miracle remedy against garlic odours on the skin. When combined with water, rust-proof stainless steel soap neutralises the smell of the sulphuric acid allicin, which is released when the bulb is crushed. The reason for this is that stainless steel temporarily coalesces with the odour-causing substances on the hands. As such, it doesn’t just work for garlic, but also for other smells. When cooking, the odour of the food sticks to your hands, whether it’s fish, onions or the smell of cheese. If you don’t have any stainless steel soap, you could instead use a stainless steel spoon to remove odours from your hands and fingers. Alternatively, you could rub your hands over a stainless steel bowl, which can also be very effective. Another kitchen hack to combat the scent of garlic is the household remedy of coffee grounds. Not only does it rid your hands of the intense smell, but it also acts as a gentle exfoliant.

A woman stands in front of a BLANCO sink and has a saucepan in her hand

Banishing smells from the kitchen

Tip 3: If you want to rid your kitchen of smells entirely, you should try boiling a tablespoon of crushed cloves in water and placing the pot with the cooking liquid in the smelly room. Of course, this also works with other smells, like fish or cabbage.

A man cuts mushrooms

Stained fingers due to mushrooms, beetroot and the like

Tip 4: Food can stain your fingers red, brown or green, making them look unsightly, and the dye can be difficult to remove. To prevent your hands from becoming stained altogether, you could wear thin gloves while preparing food. If that doesn’t appeal, you will find that your hands are discoloured after preparing ingredients, and washing them with soap alone with have little success. One household remedy against food staining is lemon juice or the Vitamin C from citrus fruits. This also makes a great exfoliant in powder form. However, it is vital to apply lots of cream to your hands afterwards so as not to irritate your skin too much.