When it comes to pizza, there are three main styles that are widely recognized: Neapolitan, Roman, and Sicilian. Each of these styles has its own unique characteristics, from the type of dough used to the way it is cooked, that set it apart from the others.
Neapolitan pizza, also known as "pizza Napoletana," is widely considered to be the original form of pizza. It originated in the city of Naples in southern Italy in the 18th century. The dough is made with ﬂour, water, yeast, and salt, and it is left to rise for at least 24 hours. Neapolitan pizza is traditionally cooked in a wood-ﬁred oven at high temperatures (around 900 °F) for no more than 90 seconds. The crust should be puﬀed up and slightly charred, while the center should be soft and moist. The toppings are usually simple and typically include tomatoes, mozzarella cheese, and basil.
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Roman pizza, which is also called "pizza al taglio," is large, rectangular, and has a crispy crust. The dough is made with ﬂour, water, yeast, and salt, and it is left to rise for about 2-3 hours. Roman pizza is typically cooked in a gas-ﬁred oven at high temperatures (around 800 °F) for about 15–20 minutes. The crust should be crispy and golden brown, while the center should be soft and moist. Toppings can vary widely, and are often more elaborate than those found on Neapolitan pizza.
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Sicilian pizza, which is also called "sﬁncione" or "sﬁnciuni," has a thick crust and breadcrumbs mixed into the dough. The dough is made with ﬂour, water, yeast, salt, and breadcrumbs, and it is left to rise for several hours. Sicilian pizza is usually cooked in a gas-ﬁred or electric oven for 20 –30 minutes at temperatures between 350 and 450 degrees Fahrenheit. The crust should be thick and slightly chewy, while the center should be soft and moist. Toppings are often more robust than in other styles, and can include ingredients such as tomatoes, onions, anchovies, and caciocavallo cheese.
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In summary, Neapolitan, Roman, and Sicilian pizzas all originate from Italy, but each has unique characteristics that set them apart. Neapolitan pizza is known for its simple toppings and is cooked in a wood-ﬁred oven. Roman pizza is characterized by its large, rectangular shape and crispy crust, while Sicilian pizza is known for its thick crust, its use of breadcrumbs in the dough, and more elaborate toppings.
If you're craving authentic Italian pizza, it's worth trying out these diﬀerent styles to compare for yourself. Whether you prefer the classic simplicity of Neapolitan, the crispy texture of Roman, or the bold ﬂavors of Sicilian, there is a pizza out there that will suit your taste perfectly.