Many cooks suggest that opening the windows as one way to get rid of cooking odors while preparing meals. There are also other options, such as brewing coffee, baking something aromatic, making a simmering potpourri and leaving out a bowl of vinegar to eliminate fish odor, onion odor, garlic, cabbage and a variety of other smells that tend to linger after cooking.
Simmering orange peels instead of a potpourri is effective at getting rid of lingering kitchen smells. Other unconventional methods of getting rid of cooking smells, such as burning toast, absorb other smells. Reader's Digest agrees with Benlafquih's suggestion of leaving out a substance, such as a bowl of vinegar, on the counter overnight but recommends baking soda, charcoal or coffee, explaining that these substances absorb stubborn odors to naturally dissipate them. When using coffee, try to add a bit of cinnamon, nutmeg or other spices to the brew. Filling a bowl with vinegar and placing it in the middle of the room works to get rid of smoke. Charcoal works best for sour odors. For smoke odors, supply proper ventilation by opening windows to get the air circulating. Placing a portable fan by the window helps blow the smoke out of the area.