If you speak to any Italian and ask them what the best pizza in Italy looks like, you are likely to get varied responses. For centuries there has been an ongoing battle between the Romans and the Neapolitans as to whose pizza really is the best! Paper thin and crispy Roman style, or tall and soft like in Naples? Well today that argument isn’t our concern. Like they say, when in Rome, eat Roman pizza! Here are 5 secrets you need to know to make sure you are always eating the real thing!
Secret #1 – The Quality of the Dough
Too chewy, too dry, too crispy! What’s the secret to the perfect pizza crust? Semolina flour, often used in pasta making for its high level of gluten-developing proteins, is what gives dough stretch and elasticity. When it is combined with classic pizza flour, the semolina gives pizza dough the perfect crispy bottom and chewy texture.
Secret #2 – The Rising Factor
Basically, the better the pizza, the less full you will feel at the end of your meal! Why is that, you might be wondering? The best way to make pizza is to make dough at least 72 hours before serving it. By giving it more time to rest and rise, you will need to use less yeast, making your pizza more digestible and less heavy on the stomach. Roman pizza is light as a feather!
Secret #3 – The Height
La vera pizza Romana, the real Roman pizza, is traditionally paper thin and crispy. Legend has it that pizza used to be a postwar thing. In those days, there were lots of small places around Rome that served mainly a thin crispy pizza pie, with poor quality ingredients and maybe a few fried foods to go with it. In fact, pizza in Rome was (and still is) known to be a cheap dinner option, or a good on-the-go style food served by the slice.
Secret #4 – The Toppings
For the perfect pizza, you want to be able to taste both the dough and the toppings, neither more than the other. If you exaggerate with the amount of toppings you will end up with a sloppy mess, as the pizza base will not be able to hold their weight. However, if you use too little, your palate will complain and want more. For that reason, the perfect amount of toppings for a great pizza is not too much and not too little.
Secret #5 – The Wood-fired Brick Oven
If you ask any Italian how real pizza should be made, the answer you will always get is “nel forno a legna”! Because Italians are advocates of the wood-fired brick oven, our pizzas often come out looking slightly (or sometimes extremely) burnt around the edges. For a real pizza eater that is never a bad thing. The black rims (and often bits of ash on your pizza) let you know that your pie has come straight out of a 300–400˚C oven, and the wood will have given it the real smoky flavor every pizza should have.
To know more about where to find the best pizza in Rome click here!