Adapting and evolving across various cultures worldwide, pizza traces its roots back to the city of Naples in Italy, so much so that Italians have created lists of the best pizzas outside of Italy.
Fabio Errante, an Italian pizza expert and author of “Fabiolo’s Pizza,” believes that pizza’s diversity is what makes it beloved globally. According to him, it’s a dish that welcomes extreme adaptation and integration with other cultures and cuisines, explaining why you can find “pizza restaurants” in every corner of the world.
Nino Coniglio, a pizza chef and owner of Brooklyn Pizza Crew and Williamsburg Pizza in New York City, believes that pizza can be made with a nearly infinite variety of toppings, allowing individuals to craft a pizza pie that suits them perfectly. He also notes that pizza is a social meal, perfect for gatherings and parties.
Here are 5 legendary types of pizza you can try in Italy and beyond:
1- Neapolitan Pizza
Known as a comfort food in Naples, Neapolitan pizza is a beloved staple. The original Neapolitan pizza is adorned with hand-peeled tomatoes, sliced fresh mozzarella cheese, basil leaves, and extra-virgin olive oil. The Association “Verace Pizza Napoletana” promotes and protects the true Neapolitan pizza, which must be cooked in a wood-burning oven.
2- Roman Pizza
In Rome, you’ll find round “Pizza Tonda” and rectangular “al Taglio.” The rectangular pizza is cut into slices, and it can be prepared with a variety of toppings, making it a canvas for creativity.
3- Fried Pizza
In Italy, you can also find fried pizza variations known as “Fritta.” It’s a popular choice in Naples for those who are willing to deviate from traditional Neapolitan pizza.
4- Sicilian Pizza
Hailing from the island of Sicily, this thick and soft is often topped with strong-flavored ingredients like olives, anchovies, or capers.
5- Lahmacun (Meat with Dough)
Found across the Middle East, this dish is a Turkish synonym for pizza. It features a thin, flatbread-like dough topped with minced meat (often beef or lamb), parsley, onion, and spices.
As pizza has journeyed beyond Italy, it has been shaped by various cultures, each adding their own unique twist. Whether it’s the classic Neapolitan, the crispy Roman, or the exotic variations found across the world, pizza remains a universal comfort food enjoyed by many.
A Culinary Journey Across Cultures
The worldwide obsession with it has led to an exciting culinary journey across cultures. From its humble origins in Naples, Italy, it has taken on diverse forms and flavors, becoming a canvas for creativity and a symbol of global gastronomy. As the dish evolved and adapted, different regions put their own spin on the classic, resulting in iconic variations like Neapolitan, Roman, Sicilian, and Lahmacun. While these styles differ in crust thickness, toppings, and preparation methods, they all share the essence of comfort and joy that a warm, cheesy, and flavorful slice of it brings. This universal appeal of it transcends borders and languages, uniting food enthusiasts worldwide in a shared love for this delectable creation.