The realities of moving from New Mexico, USA to a small town in southern Italy.
27 June 2009
Pizza in Italy is not the pizza that most Americans are familiar with. Think of a crust about the thickness of a tortilla with a thin layer of toppings, these toppings may or may not include a tomato based sauce. The basic pizza is pizza margherita which is simply a crust with tomato sauce, mozzarella cheese and basil; much as espresso is the base of all coffee drinks in Italy, pizza margherita is the base of most pizzas in Italy. Toppings are applied thinly allowing each to be tasted but not enough to overpower each other. The best pizzas are cooked in wood burning ovens where the pizzas are slid in on a wood platter and cook in just a few minutes – presto!
Pizza is also frequently eaten with a knife and fork, none of the triangular slices. Pieces are cut into narrow strips and folded upon themselves to be eaten. Pizza is served in pizzerias that are sit-down establishments generally open only for dinner while a pizza tavola serves pizza by the slice at a walk up counter and are usually open before lunch and dinner.
Pizza originated in Napoli as pizza margherita and is an Italian tradition that is not duplicated with what American’s call “pizza”. In my opinion the original pizza is soooo much better.
Labels: Unica Italia
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Just how I love my pizzas when I have one, I tend to eat them only in Italy or France...simple and tasty.
So true as with many authentic Italian dishes..."simple and tasty". We were fortunate that when we lived in Albuquerque there was a local chain that served a pretty good Italian style pizza, Il Vicino (ilvicino.com).
I agree with you on pizza! I can't understand why so few places in the US make pizza the Neapolitan way. What is considered pizz in the US is truly depressing!
Just last week I saw on the Discovery Channel a program dedicated to pizza. They went through the history etc. It was discussed that Italian immegrants did make it in the "traditional" way as you describe when they first arrived in the US. What they finally concluded was basically, they weren't in Italy anymore and it was time to break out of those confines and make something unique for their new homeland. They also talked about why the Italian immegrants in Chicago wanted to make their pizza unique from their NYC cousins so they invented the deep dish. So they said it boiled down to the Italians who came here wanted something unique to go with their new opportunities.
Why can't someone here just make a pizza like that?!
If you've tried a real Italian pizza you will always long for that when in the US.
Martin - Italian/American food has little resemblence to the cuisine you find in Italy. It is true that immigrants adapted to their new country.
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