Pizza is such a favourite food for people of all ages. If you enjoy slices of cheesy goodness from places like Pizza Express, you might be interested to discover this famous dish’s interesting history.
Pizza chains are famous all over the world. But before these brands came into existence, pizza’s popularity had a slow start. The dish was brought from Europe to other parts of the world, such as the United States, where Italian settlers migrated and took their country’s dishes with them. Pizza calls Naples, a Mediterranean coastal city, its home.
Back in the 1800s, Italy was the home of what we now recognize as the modern pizza. Yet if we go back in time, we will find that the ancient Greeks, Persians and Romans actually enjoyed the dish as well. Historical records from the Greek, Persian and Roman empires show different kinds of bread shaped in round and flat forms, served with toppings, were enjoyed by the ancient citizens.
While plenty of European nations proceeded to create meals that appear like pizza, it was the Italians who became the most fascinated with the dish, allowing it to evolve over centuries. Italian chefs created different types of pizza products.
For example in Pompei, the ancient Italian city filled with ruins today, archaeologists discovered unmistakable proof that the ancient people of Pompei had a network designed to produce pizza, including street shops and kitchens where pizzas were cooked and served.
Power of the Tomato
The advent of the humble tomato from the New World in the 1700s had a huge impact on the evolution of pizza. The tomato is considered to be the vital ingredient that made pizza famous all over the world. Even though members of the Italian royalty thought of tomato as food for poor people, it was greatly accepted since it allowed pizza dishes to become more interesting and delicious. The new recipes created by chefs from Naples changed the nobles’ minds.
Pizza’s Royal History
As the dish became more and more famous, cooks of pizza decided to grow their business. The very first restaurant that existed to produce only pizza was born on 1830, in Naples. Soon, more and more pizza restaurants began to grow all over Italy. The pizza design that was copied the most was created by a well-known chef called Raffaele Esposito.
In 1889 he designed three recipes specifically for the King and Queen of the country. One of these designs is the Margherita, considered to be one of the most famous pizza recipes up to our day.
Today people from all the nations around world purchase about 5 billion pizzas each year. The proliferation increased all the more when pizza was offered via home delivery. The dish proceeds to delight hungry patrons each day. There are original variations cropping up all the time – from interesting toppings to new recipes for the dough.
The next time you have a slice from Pizza Express or any other chain, think of this dish’s history and enjoy each bite with relish.