By Lin Cui & Yuna Kim

PAST:

As time goes by, modern-day kitchens are getting better in terms of usage and appearance due to higher technology. However, kitchens in the past were filled with bad odors and residues due to traditional cooking methods. Therefore, in the homes of the wealthy, kitchens were usually placed near a bathroom or far away from other rooms.

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12th century kitchen with an open fire in the center of the house

In the Middle Ages, there was commonly a large open fire, not a “fireplace” yet, in the center of living room for the main source of heat and light. Understandably, the cleanliness was not defined among the people for kitchen. After the invention of the chimney and fireplace, kitchens were able to be effectively utilized and separated from the living room with their own fireplaces for cooking.

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16th century kitchen with a big fireplace for cooking, heating, and roasting

With the industrial revolution, the sanitary movement was also developed in England, and it became a part of people’s concern. During the movement, cleaning methods were improved and specified with the invention of liquid soap by William Shepphard in 1865. Before the invention of liquid soap, the main cleaning method was using water on the floors and all the surface of the kitchen, which sometimes made it rusty and induces bacteria.

The first practical domestic vacuum cleaner was invented by James Spangler in 1907, the cleaning of the kitchen was easier and faster, and after the first garbage disposal was developed in 1927, the appearance of the kitchen had been enhanced.

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Domestic vacuum cleaner in 1910

PRESENT:

With rapid development of technology, more and more people are getting excited about cooking. They enjoy the process of making food with convenient equipments within short period of time. However, after all kitchen activities, the clean up process still needs figuring out, especially for some people from Asia.

For instance, curries are traditional Indian stews using coconut milk. It needs to be heated for a long time causing more stains and residues to build up in the pot. After the whole process, the pot will need so much labor to clean up. Moreover, the kitchen will be filled with curry smells. People today usually turn on the ventilation equipment with the assist of chemical products,to get the smells and stains off the kitchen. It is still causing a lot of human labor to clean.

Another way of cleaning is by using vacuum cleaners. Nowadays, the technology of vacuum cleaner is getting higher. So far, it can even absorb microscopic dust, which is hard to see by the naked eye.

FUTURE:

In the near future, cleaning with a laser light would no longer be a science fiction. A German company, cleanLASER GmbH, has invented portable laser devices that clean metal surfaces from rust, paint or contaminant.

  • Powerful,  less time consuming.
  • The rapidly moving laser pulses produce micro-plasma bursts and thermal pressure to eject the target removal.
  • The spectrum of the laser has been adjusted to remove the contaminant accurately while protecting the base material (iron, copper etc.)

 

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Waterless Cleaner with Electromagnetic waves

It is designed with the idea to clean without water (which is considered the main cause to spreading bacteria). This portable device uses electromagnetic waves that makes the objects dried and only leaving crumbs. This way, the leftover dirt is easily removed from the surface. The power of laser can be adjusted based on what type of material of pan to burn the stain without harming the base coating. Also, with this small, portable, and ergonomic device, you can carry and use it anywhere you want in your kitchen.(click on image to see how it works)

Another endorsement to having a cleaner kitchen is by having surfaces that are easier to clean. Himalayan Salt is getting to be a popular material these days. It will be applied to countertops, base cabinets, and even sinks.

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Countertop made of Himalayan Salt

By using the technologies and new materials mentioned, Asia’s kitchens will be more flexible in the future. The laser cleaner can be installed near the cooking range, (similar to an oven). People can just pull the door out and put the pan they used into the laser cleaner.

The newly discovered Himalayan salt retains hot and cold temperatures, and is non-porous which makes it durable and cleanable by plain water. Also, it is naturally anti-microbial, so it would not be a cause of spreading bacteria.

If it is going to come true soon, Asian people no longer need to use several fry pans just for one dish. They can rapidly clean the current pan and keep using it for next step of cooking. It would dramatically reduce the labor of cleaning and focus more on cooking itself.

SOURCES:

http://porch.com/advice/brief-history-kitchen/

http://www.greatachievements.org/?id=3768

http://www.tuvie.com/waterless-cleaner-utilizes-electromagnetic-waves-to-clean/

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