Pizza is a savory dish made with a form of flatbread and usually topped with tomato sauce and cheese. The word “pizza” is thought to have come from the Latin word pinsa, meaning flatbread. It is thought that the Italians invented pizza. However, its origin goes back to ancient times in the Middle East.
It has been said that the dough makes the pizza. A chewy dough with a slight pull is preferred on a pizza, and this is obtained by how the dough is mixed, fermented and baked. Pizza doughs do not require strong bread flour. This is because strong bread flour creates an elastic dough that is difficult to stretch. Therefore, all purpose flour, or a flour with a lower protein quantity (<12%), is better suited for making pizza. This would ensure that the dough is easy to pull and stretch without breaking. Retarding the dough 10℃ over a few hours or overnight also helps the proteins hydrate and relax, making the dough easier to stretch.
There are two popular forms of pizza which includes the pan pizza and the thin crust pizza. Pan pizzas are usually baked in a pan consisting of oil that will crisp up the bottom of the dough during baking. Thin crust pizzas are usually hand stretched to a thin layer and baked at very high temperatures to ensure a crisp bottom and edge. The popular wood fired pizzas these days use the thin crust pizzas to obtain a faster bake.
Pizza can be bought frozen from the grocery store, or fresh from pizzerias in America. Due to this availability and portability, pizza has become one of the most popular convenience foods. The ability to feed many people with one pizza has propelled this popularity.