The origin of pizza can be traced all the way back to ancient Greece and Rome, where flatbreads were topped with herbs and oil. This popular dish eventually made its way to Italy, where tomatoes were added as a topping.
From there, modern pizza was born! Let's take a closer look at the history of pizza and how it became so popular.
When Did Modern Pizza Rise to Prominence?
In 1889, Raffaele Esposito created the first Neapolitan-style pizza, which consisted of tomatoes, mozzarella cheese, and basil. This pizza was so popular that it was even served to the King and Queen of Italy at the time.
Since then, pizza has become an international sensation with many variations throughout the world. In fact, you will likely find it difficult to visit a major city that isn't filled with pizza shops.
Pizza Had Humble Beginnings in the US
During World War II, troops stationed in Italy brought home their love for pizza and helped to popularize it throughout the US. By the 1950s, pizza parlors started popping up all over the country. This rise in popularity led to the creation of new types of pizza and made it much more commonplace.
It didn't take long from here for pizza to become an American favorite.
What Makes Pizza so Popular?
Pizza's versatility, affordability, and convenience make it an ideal meal for both casual gatherings and special occasions.
It can be as simple or complex as you want it to be, with countless toppings and variations available. Plus, it cooks quickly and tastes delicious.
As a result, pizza has become a staple in many households all over the world. Not to mention, pizza delivery has made it even easier to enjoy your favorite slices.
What Are the Most Notable Types of Pizza?
Some of the most popular variations of pizza include Neapolitan, New York style, Chicago deep dish, and Detroit-style square. Each type has distinct characteristics like crust thickness and flavor profile that make them unique.
Let's take a closer look at each.
This style of pizza is thin and cooked at a high temperature in a wood-fired oven. Toppings are simple, usually consisting of tomatoes and fresh mozzarella cheese. It also has a slightly smoky flavor from the oven.
Many people enjoy Neapolitan pizza for its simple yet delicious taste.
New York Style
This type of pizza has a thin crust that is foldable yet crisp on the edges. It's typically served by the slice with classic toppings like pepperoni and sausage.
When eating a slice, it's not uncommon to fold it in half and eat it like a sandwich due to its size.
This type of pizza is thick, with a crunchy crust that is filled with cheese and toppings before being topped with tomato sauce.
Deep-dish pizza is usually served in a deep, round pan and eaten with a fork. As you might guess, most people don't eat a whole deep-dish pizza in one sitting!
This type of pizza has a thick, buttery crust and is rectangular in shape.
It's usually topped with Wisconsin brick cheese, which gives it a unique flavor profile compared to other pizzas. Detroit-style square is usually served as individual slices rather than by the pie. This doesn't detract from the experience in any way, though.
What Are the Different Ways to Cook Pizza?
Not all pizza is made in a brick oven. There are many ways to cook it, including in a convection oven, on the grill, over an open flame, and even in a waffle iron!
Of course, each method has its own unique flavor profile. One of the most popular is by using a wood-fired oven.
This method imparts a smoky, charred flavor to the pizza that you just can't get with other cooking methods. Although not quite as flavorful, frozen pizzas are also a convenient option for those busy nights when you don't have time to cook.
What Type of Cheese Is Best For Pizza?
Mozzarella cheese is the most popular choice for pizza, and it's no wonder why.
It melts nicely and adds a creamy flavor to the dish. Other common types of cheese used in pizzas are parmesan, ricotta, goat cheese, and provolone.
People tend to use other types of cheeses when looking for something with a more complex flavor. It's also not uncommon to use more than one type of cheese within a single pizza. Some people even enjoy pizza with cheese-stuffed crust.
Where Can I Find the Best Pizza?
Although there are plenty of opportunities to choose from, Italian restaurants are widely known for having the best pizza. They often use traditional recipes and cooking methods that result in delicious pies.
Of course, there are also many pizzerias around the world with their own unique offerings as well. It should be noted that many Italian restaurants also provide catering services. So, if you're looking for a great way to feed your family or friends, pizza is always a great option.
The History of Pizza Shouldn't Be Overlooked
Although pizza is a beloved dish today, it has an interesting history that you should keep in mind. It's been a long journey; the pizza has become one of the most noteworthy and enjoyable foods throughout the entire world.
Looking for more information on how we can help? Feel free to get in touch with us today to learn more.