Ooni Karu 16 Review: Light wood pizza as easy as Pie

Around this time every year, the madness of the pizza oven comes down on me and my husband. It starts with a simple, “Oh, so-and-so comes to town? We have to make pizza!” We turn on the oven and grab some mozzarella in the store. It’s so good, so incredibly quick and easy, that next week, I’ll make chicken legs in the pizza oven instead of on the stove.

Then a quick loaf of Brussels sprouts in wood. Then a salty, bloody, perfectly roasted side steak. Suddenly, it’s noon one day of work and I have a single salmon fillet shredded by Costco. I look in the yard and I think, should I? Wood salmon for one? No Calm down. Do some work.

The kitchen with a wood-burning oven has the same intense and meditative quality as roasting marshmallows while camping. With Ooni’s latest furnace, it’s as easy as using gas. I can pull a few things out of my fridge at 5:30 pm and make cooked dinner at 6:00 pm. All of my friends and family who were lucky enough to be invited to dinner also wanted one of these.

Winner Take All

If you have a design that really works, why change it? The Ooni Karu 16 repeats the look of the company’s sea turtle previous ovens. However, unlike the shiny stainless steel Ooni Pro, the Karu 16 has a temperature-resistant powder-coated finish on a carbon and stainless steel shell.

The isolation is amazing. I took my hand a few inches from the surface when the oven was 700 degrees, and only then scared did I touch it with a fingertip. It was okay, just a little hot-tempered if you have it in the yard and you worry that a stray kid or a friend who drinks beer might push it against you.

The Karu 16 is a multi-fuel stove. You can buy Ooni attachment to gas burner separately, but by default it is made to be used both with charcoal and with wood. Unlike some of its other ovens, the Karu 16 also has an entrance door that closes with a hook, and a digital thermometer that shows the room temperature. It’s incredibly convenient and almost as accurate as my hand-held laser thermometer.

The kitchen with the wood looks intimidating, and I’m not professional pizza chef, but I can get the Ooni in less than 10 minutes –via faster than it could with coal. Ooni sent a box of and sound firestarters ($ 20) and a package of oak sticks ($ 40). All I have to do is light a fire, light the fuel flag at the bottom, light a couple of oak sticks above it, and close the door.

In the past few years, I’ve found it too Stump Chunks ($ 9) be an equally fast and effective fire starter. My local hardware also sells different types of wood, but if you have space, we recommend keeping it a small butcher’s shop useful for dividing pieces into smaller pieces. However, make sure the wood you are using is well-seasoned. In a misguided attempt to save some money, I used some wood that had spent the winter outside on my deck and was unpleasantly smoky.

Certificate of Approval

Not only is the Karu 16 insanely easy to use, but it’s also the first and only pizza oven to recommend for home use by the Real Neapolitan Pizza Association, the world pizza authority in Naples. In addition to the approved ingredients – tomatoes, crushed by hand, and preferably from Campania – a pizza in Naples is distinguished from the more familiar pizza in New York by its sweet, pillowy crust and a sweeter interior. .

Photography: Ooni

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