The big pizza cookery book

In Naples you don't eat pizza at home, you go out to a pizzeria, a meeting place for rich and poor, young and old. Each region and every housewife in Italy has their own personal recipes to spoil even pizza connoisseurs.

You can find a huge variety of flavours and shapes; but whether the pizza is round, angular or square the most important thing is the taste.

The pizzaiolo follows three basic rules in order to make a genuine pizza:

  • you can only make pizza with yeast dough
  • only the surface of the dough may come into contact with the topping
  • it's best to bake the pizza as quickly as possible in a very hot wood-fired oven.

Apart from the Pizza Napoletana, the best-known pizza is the Margherita. This took its name from Margherita, the wife of King Umberto of Savoy, who first tasted the delicious dish in Naples in the 19th century.

It is topped with ripe tomatoes and fresh mozzarella, and the pizza is rounded off with olive oil and pecorino (ewes' milk cheese).

The pizza as we know it today has developed to its present state of perfection over the centuries. Try the crisp dough with its juicy toppings for yourself and you will soon see why pizza has so many fans all over the world.

As they say, the proof of the pizza is in the eating especially in good company and with a glass of wine!

We hope you'll enjoy cooking (and eating) the delicious dishes suggested in the following recipes!