Eating out(side) – the new outdoor cooking trend

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© jokodomus

Eating together traditionally plays an important role all over the world. For some years now, however, cooking together has been enjoying growing popularity as well, as open-plan layouts in which the kitchen, dining area and living room merge into one single space go to show. But now cooking in company is going one step further – and moving outside. Whereas the idea of planning a house with an outdoor kitchen goes back a long way in Southern Europe, this trend is now establishing itself in the rather less sun-kissed climes of Central and Northern Europe as well. After all, what could be nicer than cooking and eating with friends on long, balmy summer evenings?

Vooking: Kitchen design perfectly tailored for vegetarian cooking

Vooking – an abbreviation of vegetarian cooking – is the result of a collaboration of an interdisciplinary team consisting of industrial and furniture designers, a cook and a carpenter. For this project, the industrial designers Mario Zeppetzauer and Stefan Degn of the German design agency “formquadrat” got together with the furniture designer Stefan Radinger, the cook Harald Hochettlinger and the carpenter Gerhard Spitzbart to discuss one question: Do I need a different kitchen for vegetarian cooking? The result is a new kitchen design named Vooking.

Now, which elements of this design differ from a classic kitchen design? Here are a few examples:

When cooking vegetarian meals significantly more food is cleaned and washed. This fact was taken into consideration when developing the modular and flexible 2-bowl-sink, which is equipped with border zones. Also integrated in the sink is a device for systematic disinfection. Moreover, a scale especially for grain enables to portion directly from grain sacks. The grain mill is designed as a built-in device and meets – just as the entire kitchen – the highest standards of modern design. “Indoor farming” to grow fresh herbs and spices is also part of the equipment as well as a cooling system that adapts to different foods.

It will take a little longer from the prototype to a market-ready version of Vooking. On LivingKitchen 2015 this revolutionary kitchen design will be presented to the public for the first time and you will have the chance to get a glance of this unique concept.

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The project team: Gerhard Spitzbart, Harald Hochettlinger, Stefan Radinger, Mario Zeppetzauer, Stefan Degn (from left to right)

Vooking Concept Sketch

Prototype of Vooking

Kitchens that keep up with you

Smart Home – a term that has become indispensable in the construction and furnishing industry by now. But what does it actually mean and what benefits does a Smart Home provide specifically for the kitchen area? In our blog, we take a closer look and also present you the best developments currently available for a smart kitchen.

The term smart home or intelligent living describes living concepts, in which household appliances and consumer electronics are linked together to form a seamlessly integrated system, enabling a continuous exchange of information between those devices and thus providing overall control. In the context of these concepts, location and time are irrelevant: If one noticed at work that he or she has forgotten to switch off the coffee machine or to close the window, it is possible to do it simply via smartphone or tablet.

For the kitchen, the market already offers a range of convincing solutions: for example tablets that are built in the kitchen wall and control all devices in the house. Another example are intelligent refrigerators that independently create shopping lists and take photos of their contents or send messages whenever certain foods are reaching their expiry date. Innovative hobs can contain, in addition to cooking plates, also a monitor for social networks and numerous apps. Stoves are able to detect where pots and pans have been placed and will heat up only these areas – while you can leisurely read a recipe anywhere else on the surface. Another technical highlight are dishwashers that are linked with a mobile device via an app. Thanks to this, the user not only gets a message when the dishes are clean, but can also learn, for example, which program is ideal for certain dishes.

These technical features show that manufacturers already invest in the development of intelligent homes. But what is the actual benefit? The answer is simple: enabling not only additional living comfort and safety, but also optimized energy efficiency.

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Pictures: Examples for smart kitchen technology