“Pizza” is believed to come from a medieval Latin word referring to flatbreads. Originally a specialty from Naples, it was topped with various ingredients and baked in the oven. Only in the 18th century did tomatoes become one of the main ingredients in pizzas!
The art of making this iconic Italian dish is taken very seriously. It was even awarded UNESCO* World Heritage status is 2017.
The dough: three ingredients only!
- Nothing but white flour, water and salt.
The more refined the flour, the whiter it is, and the lower in minerals. The ideal type is the one Italians refer to as “00 flour,” made with the heart of the wheat grain!
- The proportions
1 litre water, 1.4 kg flour, 50 g salt
In summer, you can increase the amount of salt by up to 6 g to strengthen the dough. Leave it to rest naturally, never in the refrigerator.
Putting it together
Here are a few rules for success when making pizza dough:
- Work in a healthy room, free from drafts and humidity.
- Use a wooden table or board to absorb humidity.
- Make balls of dough the size of your fist and leave them to rest for 12 to 14 hours. Be patient and avoid overworking the dough. Italian chefs are so demanding they even pay attention to the exact temperature of the room in which the dough will rise.
- Forget your rolling pin! To preserve the air bubbles in the dough, is important to spread it out by hand when shaping your pizza.
The tomato sauce
Just as important as the dough, the tomato sauce is an integral part of the pizza! We created a special sauce for your pizzas. Made with authentic Italian tomatoes ripened under the Mediterranean sun, our tomato sauce is simmered over low heat with other fresh, aromatic local ingredients, letting you enjoy the taste and texture of a true homemade sauce!
- The toppings
It is now time to let your tastes guide your creativity! For the cheese, choose preferably buffalo mozzarella from Campania, ideally drained overnight, cut into thin slices several minutes before topping the pizza. Here are some of the world’s most popular recipes:
- Margherita : Tomato sauce, mozzarella, basil, olive oil
- Regina: Tomato sauce, mozzarella, ham, mushrooms
- Napoletana: Tomato, mozzarella, anchovies, black olives, oregano, olive oil
- Roman: Tomato sauce, mozzarella, anchovies, oregano, olive oil
- Sicilian : Tomato sauce, mozzarella, basil, anchovies, capers, mushrooms, artichoke, ham, olives, olive oil
- Four seasons: Tomato sauce and vegetables, each representing one season
- Four cheeses: Tomato, mozzarella and other cheeses, depending on local specialties
- Calzone (derived from the Italian word for “stocking”): tomato sauce, mozzarella, ham, mushrooms, egg
- Hawaiian: Tomato sauce, mozzarella, ham, pineapple
Cooking your pizza
Traditional Neapolitan pizza is baked in a wood-fired oven at 400 degrees Celsius in just 50 seconds! But don’t worry, your home oven will work just as well.
Did you know that…
According to a study carried out by the Milan Institute for Pharmacological Research in 2003, eating artisanal or homemade pizza several times a week may lower the risk of some cancers. The ingredients used to make it, including extra virgin olive oil, vegetables and tomatoes, are very similar to the staples of the Mediterranean diet.
The first American pizzeria opened in Manhattan’s Little Italy neighbourhood. The Americans adapted the recipe based on locally available products. That is why American pizza is thicker, less crispy and oiler than Italian pizza
Sources: Fine dining lovers / Wikipedia / Cuisine gastronomie / cuisine de A à Z
*UNESCO World Heritage: The UNESCO World Heritage designation refers to cultural and natural properties of outstanding universal value. It has been updated every year since 1978 by the World Heritage Committee of the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO), one of the UN’s specialized institution. Italy is the country with the highest number of UNESCO World Heritage Sites: 53.