What we know today and delicious pizza is based off of the traditional flatbreads found in Naples, Italy during the 18th and 19th century. The actual word pizza is first documented in 997 A.D.. This was a popular dish for immigrants in Italy. It became even more popular during World War II where it was introduced to Allied troops along with other Italian dishes.
Pizza made its debut in the U.S. when Italian immigrants settled into cities like New York, Chicago, Philadelphia, Trenton and St. Louis in the late 19th century. These immigrants are the originators of the favorite pizzas we know today. Pizzas such as New York style pizza, Detroit style pizza, and St. Louis Style pizza.
Today, pizza is a household favorite and one of the most common dishes we eat! It’s no wonder this dish is so popular, it’s completely customizable and allows for creativity. This creativity is what brought us pizzas like california style pizzas, deep dish pizzas, greek style pizzas and ever dessert pizzas!
However we want to talk about authentic types of pizzas found in Italy, and what toppings you should put on your next slice
- What is a traditional Italian Pizza?
- Types of Italian Pizza you should try
- What are the most popular Pizzas in Italy?
- Semolina Flour
What is a traditional Italian Pizza?
A traditional Italian pizza is something that would have been found in southern and central Italy during the early 19th century. The most traditional type of pizza is one that we all know and love, the “Margherita” pizza.
This pizza is rumored to have been made to honor the queen consort of Italy, Margherita of Savoy. In her honor, the pizza was made to represent the Italian flag. Thus, this pizza was made with a hand-tossed pizza crust, red tomatoes, white mozzarella cheese and fresh green basil leaves.
The modern version of this pizza is typically served with a marinara or tomato sauce. However the “Marinara” pizza was different from the “Margherita” pizza. The “Marinara” pizza is the second most traditional type of pizza, known as a Sicilian pizza.
Types of Italian Pizza you should try
Here’s a list of Italian pizzas you need to try as soon as possible. If you can't find them at a local restaurant, you can always make them at home!
- Pizza alla Pala
- Pizza tonda Romana
- pizza al taglio
- Pizza Siciliana or Sfincione
- Pizza al Padellino
There’s even a few honorable mentions that are exactly Italian pizza, but you still must try them! We recommended a classic New York slice or a California pizza, kitchens smell delightful with these cooking!
What are the most popular Pizzas in Italy?
The most famous type of pizza you’ll find in Italy is the Pizza Napoletana. La pizza Napoletana originates from Naples, hence the name. This pizza is special because it can only be made in a very specific way. In fact, this pizza recipe is protected by a Traditional Specialty Guaranteed (TSG) certification.
After mixing together wheat flour, salt, yeast and water, chefs will allow the dough to rise for 24 hours. The dough will be hand-tossed until it is circular and creates a 3 millimeters thick crust. This pizza’s toppings include raw tomatoes, fresh mozzarella cheese, fresh basil, and authentic olive oil.
The crust is then baked in an incredibly hot wood-burning oven for 90 seconds (around 900°F). The crust turns out to be extremely tall, soft, and fluffy. This very delicious crust is actually referred to as cornicione in Italian. From here, you can cut the crispy crust with a sharp pizza blade and serve in either the classic triangle shape or cut into squares!
Semolina flour appears more golden and darker than all purpose flour, and possesses an earthy aroma. Semolina is made using grooved steel rollers, which break the starch of the wheat kernels. It’s then processed and grounded into flour.
Semolina flour is used all around the world but is most popular in Italy and Italian cuisine. Semolina is high in gluten, which helps pasta keep its shape while cooking.
Semolina flour is that special ingredient that helps make the dough chewy and gives it a great texture. You can read more about it in our blogs “Semolina Pasta: Why it’s Better” and “Semolina Pasta: Our Way”