American and Italian Pizza

American and Italian Pizza

Pizza is a beloved dish that is enjoyed all over the world, but there are notable differences between pizza made in the United States and pizza made in Italy.

One of the main differences is the crust. American pizza tends to have a thicker crust that is often crispy and doughy. This is due to the use of high-gluten flour, which is higher in protein content and results in a chewier texture. Additionally, American pizzerias often use a higher amount of yeast in their dough, which leads to a higher rise and a fluffier crust. In contrast, Italian pizza has a thinner crust that is crispy and chewy. The crust of Italian pizza is made with only flour, water, yeast and salt, and is typically made with a lower protein content flour, which results in a thinner and crispier crust. Italian pizza crust is also characterized by its leoparding, or dark spots, on the crust which is a result of high heat.

Another difference is the toppings. American pizza is known for its wide variety of toppings, including pepperoni, sausage, bacon, and even pineapple. These toppings are often added in large quantities and are meant to be the star of the show. In contrast, Italian pizza is often made with simple toppings such as tomatoes, mozzarella cheese, basil, and olive oil. This simplicity is a result of the Italian tradition of using only the freshest, highest-quality ingredients, rather than loading the pizza with as many toppings as possible. The toppings are meant to complement the crust and dough, rather than overpower it.

Additionally, while American pizza is often cut into square slices, Italian pizza is traditionally cut into wedges. This is because Italian pizza is often sold by weight and is typically consumed as a snack or appetizer, rather than a full meal. The wedges are meant to be eaten with one hand, allowing the consumer to continue with their day or social activities. American pizza on the other hand, is typically consumed as a main course and is often cut into slices for ease of consumption.

Lastly, the way pizza is consumed is different in the two countries. In the United States, pizza is often ordered for delivery or take-out, and is eaten as a quick and convenient meal. In Italy, pizza is typically consumed at a sit-down restaurant, and is enjoyed as a leisurely and social experience. The pizza is cooked in a wood-fired oven and is often served with a selection of antipasti or small plates. The pizza is meant to be savored and enjoyed with a glass of wine or a beer, rather than rushed through.

It is also worth mentioning that the pizza tradition in Italy is much older and more varied than in the United States. The pizza as we know it today, was born in the 19th century in Naples and it quickly spread throughout the country. In Italy, there are several types of pizza, each with their own characteristics and ingredients. For example, Neapolitan pizza is typically made with a thicker crust and is cooked in a wood-fired oven, Roman pizza is thin and crispy, and Sicilian pizza is often square-shaped and has a thick crust. In the United States, pizza was introduced only in the late 19th century by Italian immigrants, and the tradition is not as varied.

Overall, while American and Italian pizza both use similar ingredients, the preparation and presentation are quite different. American pizza is known for its variety of toppings and thick crust, while Italian pizza is known for its simplicity and thin crust. Both styles have their own unique appeal and are enjoyed by people all over the world. However, it is important to note that the pizza tradition in Italy is much older and more