Pizza, the staple dish that originated in Italy, is famous worldwide. It comes in a circular shape, cuts into triangles, and is stored in a square box; these delicacies have a long history and have evolved into a unique and different dish in every part of the world.
February 9th is marked as National Pizza Day. Some say that National Pizza Day began in the 10th century in Naples, Italy.
The word for pizza generally refers to pressing or flattening the dough to make a crust. It started as a simple flatbread spread with sauce and sprinkled with cheese, nowadays you can find a lot of variations of pizza with some unique toppings such as Sweet potato, Broccoli, or even Rendang Pizza!
From a mix of tangy Pineapples in Hawaii to a mash of cultural food such as Rendang Pizza, every region of the world has experimented with creating its signature pizza flavour.
Naples, Italy - Neopolitan Pizza
This classic pizza originated in Naples, Italy, served with thin crust and topped with San Marzano tomatoes and mozzarella cheese. Final touch with basil leaves, and you have a Margherita pizza whose colours resemble the Italian Flag.
Rome, Italy - Pizza Bianca
Pizza Bianca, or “White Pizza”, is a famous delicacy on the street and in the pizzerias of Rome. Traditionally, a simpler version of the Neopolitan style, Pizza Bianca contains neither cheese nor tomato sauce. Instead, it features thin dough drizzled with olive oil and coarse salt, baked and sliced before serving.
Sicily, Italy - Sfincione (Sicilian Pizza)
Sfincione or focaccia with toppings, this type of pizza became a popular dish in western Sicily by the mid-19th. Traditional Sicilian Pizza is often rectangular, thick, crusted; others can also be round, similar to the Neapolitan Pizza. It is usually topped with onions, anchovies, tomatoes, herbs and strong cheese such as caciocavallo and toma (soft semi-hard Italian’s cow’s milk cheese)
France - Tarte Flambee
Originating from the Alsace region, Flammekueche means “cooked in flames”, the French flambee has a similar meaning. It starts with bread dough rolled out fine as a crepe. But instead of tomatoes, anchovies and mozzarella, this dough is spread with creme fraiche, a thick soured cream mixed with a delicate fresh Fromage blanc and baked in a wood-fired oven. Seasoned with salt and pepper, and thinly sliced white onions and bacon cut like matchsticks go on top. France has several varieties, including a dessert version with apples, cinnamon, and sweet liqueur.
Spain - Coca
Coca de Trampo, also known as Spanis Pizza, is a part flatbread, part pizza, and this pizza can be served sweet or savoury. This delicacy is a popular recipe on the island of Mallorca, Spain, where you can easily find it in every bakery. Made from tomatoes, peppers, and onions, Coca de Trampo is usually packed with fresh flavours and can be served as an appetizer, dinner, or even brunch.
New York - New York Style Pizza
The famous New York-style pizza started back in 1905, when the first pizzeria in the U.S., Lombardi’s, opened on Spring Street New York, also known as Little Italy. What makes New York-style pizza different from the rest is its crispy, thin, and usually hand-tossed crust traditionally baked in coal-fired. Topped with a light tomato sauce and mozzarella cheese, you can easily find New York style Pizza in Jakarta.
Chicago - Chicago Deep Dish Pizza
Unlike its neighbour New York, Chicago Deep Dish Pizza resembles a pie with its tall and thick crust and fulls of topping, including meat and cheese layered under a hefty of tomato sauce. Invented by Ike Sewell and Ric Riccardo in Chicago in 1943, Deep-dish Pizza is baked in a round iron skillet or steel pan, similar to a cake or pie pan. The pan is oiled for easy removal and create a fried effect on the outside of the crust.
Turkey - Lahmacun
There’s some debate over whether lahmacun originated in Turkey or Armenia; either way, the result is a delicious, pizza-Esque snack. The name translates loosely to “meat and dough”—precisely what it is, with minced beef or lamb topping a piece of dough. Other common ingredients include onion, herbs, and tomatoes.
Japan - Okonomiyaki
Sometimes refers as Japanese Pizza, Okonomiyaki is a Japanese savoury pancake dish consisting of wheat flour batter and other ingredients mixed or toppings, cooked on a flat griddle. While it is somewhat debatable whether Okonomiyaki is a pizza, this Japan’s staple dish has different recipes in every region, usually including cabbage, pork, noodles, and squid. The ingredients are layered or mixed, fried in batter, then topped with Okonomiyaki sauce and Japanese mayo.
Lebanon - Manakish
Manakish is a favourite Lebanese breakfast – a round, flatbread that is typically topped with olive oil and zaatar (sumac, sesame seeds, and thyme), then baked in the oven. Usually served as a morning meal, the name Manakish means decorated or stamp, referring to a technique used to make the dough. Aside from the traditional topping, Manakish sometimes comes with cheese, spinach, minced lamb, or fried eggplants.