21 November 2011

Naples, Italy: The Birthplace of Pizza

Do you like your pizza thin and crispy, like in Rome, or soft and pliable, like in Naples? I went to Naples yesterday for the first time (the streets looked just like this except more crowded for Christmas) and tried the Naples version of pizza. As an Italian man at my table said: "This is the best pizza I've ever eaten." He said this with a look on his face resembling bliss.

How do they get the pizza  soft and pliable? They make the dough the day before and let it rise for 10- 15 hours. Then, they cook it in wood burning ovens at 485 degrees C (905 degrees F) for 60- 90 seconds. The crust is then soft and light and tastes like a dream. It looks like this (this is actually mine).

Although some pizzerias will serve other types of pizza, the "authentic" pizzas are considered to be pizza marinara, made with tomatoes, oregano, garlic and extra-virgin olive oil, and pizza margherita, (named for a Queen and my favorite), made to look like the flag of Italy with basil leaves for green, mozzarella for white and tomatoes for red. Mine has buffalo milk mozzarella (popular in this area) as a topping in the middle. It was extraordinary.

The first pizzeria in Naples, Antica Pizza Port'alba, was founded in 1738, although the first appearance of pizza was in a Latin text from the Italian town of Gaeta in 997AD. Most food historians point to Naples as the area of origin, and to Napoletana, the pizza of Naples, as the archetype of this type of pizza. 

This pizza was served in this restaurant. People wait outside in long lines until the tables empty and they can experience pizza alla Naples. It's worth the wait.

What food are you savoring today? 


  1. I have never met a pizza I didn't like/ha
    Guess if I had to choose, it would be thin and crispy.

  2. Oh, that looks delicious. I'm actually making homemade pizza (dough and all) for dinner. I prefer the style of Naples; my husband goes for the thin type of Rome. Guess who wins out. Okay, I'll tell you: My husband, just because he's spoiled. :)

  3. Ohhhh. I like my pizza thin and crispy. I especially like it in Italy:)

  4. My mouth is sooooooo watering!

  5. Can I have pizza for breakfast please?

  6. Wow! That is a lot of pizza for a little gal like you! I like my pizza thin and loaded, but that sure does look good. I could make an exception here. :-)

  7. Your pizza looks delicious! As for me, I like the pan pizza supreme from Pizza Hut. yum!!!

  8. Nanny, Me too until I tried this. Oh, the way it feels in my mouth!

    Lisa, Your husband is a lucky guy!

    Lauren, It's said that the water in Naples makes the taste better. So it does taste best here!

    TB, It was extraordinary.

    Ruth, Certainly- you can put anything on pizza. Originally it was bread for the poor (who actually couldn't afford plates) to put their food on.

    DJan, 13.7 inches in diameter and I finished every morsel. I couldn't believe how light it was and every ingredient was fresh and so delicious.

    gigi, I remember liking that when I lived in the states but I'm spoiled now after being exposed to fabulous pizza made to order with fresh ingredients and baked in wood burning ovens. OMG!

    Mama Zen, Me too. Not a week goes by without pizza. We're making a study of best places in our area. Nice kind of research!

  9. I can't even tell you how deeelicious this looks!!
    The thing I miss most about being a raw foodist, is the smell. And I bet that pizza smelled divine! And tasted even better.
    Have one for me, the next time you're there! :)
    Great pictures.

  10. Gabriele, Because the ingredients are so fresh and the pizza is only cooked 60-90 seconds and there's basil on it, the smell was divine.

  11. I shall be heading towards a bowl of porridge in a minute, but you pizza looks luscious! LOL

  12. Jinsky, Pizza or porridge? Hmmm!

  13. We are having seafood gumbo this evening. Sharing it with four of my favorite people in the whole world only will make it taste better.
    Yum, you make the pizza sound like something that I'd give up all my extra weight watcher points for.

  14. I'm a thin and crispy fan, but I have to admit, that Napoletana looks mighty good.

  15. BRM, Now there's a concept- ww points for Naples pizza. Welcome!

    Patti, A whole different thing- light, chewy, yummy!


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