Psst... We're working on the next generation of Chowhound! View >
HOME > Chowhound > General Topics >
Apr 24, 2008 07:15 AM

Embarrassing odor

This is a weird questions but here goes: I recently picked up some asafetida at an Indian market for a recipe and it's really stinking up my pantry! It's in a plastic container and I haven't opened it yet, but it's so smelly. Any tips for storing this spice? Can it be kept in the freezer?

  1. Click to Upload a photo (10 MB limit)
  1. I just keep it in a ziplock bag in my 2nd pantry (i.e., baskets hung inside my coat closet)!

    2 Replies
    1. re: MMRuth

      Thanks, I'll try that. I was also thinking of putting the entire container in a big glass jar, but I don't have much space.

    2. Well, I've seen that storing it in your pantry is a good idea for keeping insects at bay!

      But another tip I've seen is to store it in a glass jar w/a metal lid to contain the "aroma" better. Maybe someone else knows about freezing.

      1. I guess the nickname "Devil's Dung" is appropriate. The word actually means smelling or fetid resin. Some report a smell of rotten garlic. Perhaps, you could stash it someplace outdoors.

        1. I'd use glass.

          You know how Nalgene water bottles aren't supposed to absorb odors? WELL..... try storing them next to your asafetida! The smell will NOT wash out!

          1. Asafoetida and Valerian.. two big time stinkers! I store both in their jar inside of a canning jar with a metal lid. Those smells can even work their way through a zip-lock bag.

            5 Replies
            1. re: fromagina

              Wow, the army should study this stuff as a potential chemical weapon. I'm ready to move out of my house and I've only had the container for a week or so!

              1. re: newhavener07

                It's funny, b/c I haven't noticed the odd smell at all! And I've probably had it for a year.

                1. re: MMRuth

                  Me too, Ruth. I was starting to think I either had some really bad asafoetida or my kitchen stunk so bad that I didn't even notice it.

                  And I have a very acute sense of smell.

                  1. re: Miss Needle

                    You two must have a bad batch of Asafoetida. I had it inside of a plastic jar inside of a glass jar with a wooden lid with a rubber gasket. It was still possible to smell it, and I ended up throwing away the glass jar because the odor had permeated the wooden lid. This stuff is the smelliest stuff you can get without a security clearance. I no longer have any in my pantry, and would only consider giving some to enemies.

                    1. re: Miss Needle

                      As another poster mentions further down, hing/asafoetida comes in different strengths. I keep the strong stuff in its original jar inside of a canning jar. The diluted stuff is milder. When following a recipe, be sure you know which kind the author had in mind, so you put in the right amount. If it is calling for a "pinch" of it, I doubt it wants the dilute stuff. If I recall, the dilute stuff I used to have was yellower than what I have now. What I have now is browner.