Uuni: the wood-fired pizza oven that fits inside a suitcase
For a top-notch pizza, the best places to go usually make theirs the old-fashioned way, in a wood-fire oven. Unfortuantely, unless you've got the budget and space to build a full-sized brick oven, you're not going to be able to make your own pizzas at home the same way. It's a gap the Uuni is looking to fill. The Uuni is a lightweight, wood-burning pizza oven that's small enough to fit in a kitchen and cooks a pizza in under three minutes.
London-based inventor Kristian Tapaninaho devised the Uuni after he realized there was no practical way for him to have a wood-fire oven in his rented house without spending a lot of money and then leaving it behind when he moved. He still wanted the authentic flavor that gas or electric heat couldn't provide, so he spent a year designing and testing ideas for a more compact wood-fueled furnace. He eventually settled on a working prototype and named it "Uuni," which translates literally to "oven" in his native Finnish.
The oven itself is 12 cm x 36 cm x 48 cm, which is compact enough to fit in a suitcase or take to a park. The prototype weighs 7 kg (about 15 lbs), but Tapaninaho claims the final version will be under 5 kg (about 11 lbs). Thus far, the prototypes have been constructed from a mild steel, but the finished production model will use stainless steel and have a black finish.
Tapaninaho has not revealed exactly how the oven works – he wants to protect some of the methods he used to build it – but he has stated that it does use wood for fuel and reaches temperatures as high as 450°C (800°F). After 15-20 minutes of pre-heating, the Uuni can fully cook a pizza in about 3 minutes. The oven remains heated as long as it is kept stocked with wood, which needs to be refilled every 20 minutes or so.
Tapaninaho wrapped up a successful Kickstarter campaign to bring the oven into production last month, receiving over twice the amount of money he needed to reach his goal.
The Uuni Pizza Oven isn't available to purchase quite yet, but you can still pre-order one through the company's website to have it delivered in March of this year. Each oven costs £180 (about US$285) and will ship internationally with an extra shipping charge. If you're in the market you might want to order one soon though, because the website states it may not be accepting any more direct orders after the ovens go into production.