Pizza – a name that brings water to everyone’s mouth, be it your kido or his granny or you, is definitely one of the most popular foods in the world. We just keep devouring this delicacy day after day but very little do we know about the facts and history hidden behind this mouth-watering food. So today, let us take a look at 20 interesting facts about pizza. Are you ready?
1. The first pizza wasn’t made in Italy or USA. It was ancient Greeks who gave birth to Pizza. They used to bake flat and round large breads and topped them with veggies, potatoes, spices and olive oil. Definitely that was the earliest version of pizza known to have exist in human society.
2. 18th century Italy was the country where the first commercial pizza originated. This commercial pizza didn’t have any kind of topping. It was just a plain, flat and round bread that was quite tasty and filling and were sold only to the poor because they were cheap. Street vendors in Naples used to sell these breads by the name ‘pizza’.
3. In 1889, Italian Queen Margherita was once traveling across her kingdom and noticed that peasants were munching on that large piece of bread. She became curious and tasted it. She liked it so much that every time she visited her subjects, she ate the bread. Because it was considered to be peasants’ food, the Queen dining on it was not usual and this created anxiety and dismay in Court Circle.
4. Queen Margherita eventually called Chef Rafaelle Esposito and ordered to make some pizzas for her. The chef baked a pizza using fresh basil, Mozzarella Cheese and tomatoes. The colors were carefully selected because they represented the colors of Italian Flag – red, white and green. This especially baked pizza became Queen’s favorite pizza and by word of mouth it was spread that pizza is Queen’s favorite food. This made her very popular among her subjects.
5. The Queen started a tradition known as Pizza Margherita. This tradition still continues in Naples and has also become popular worldwide.
6. America, England, France and Spain started to know pizza properly after World War II. It was during WWII that many European and American soldiers tasted pizza during occupation of Italian cities.
7. Though pizza was still available in America before WWII when Italian immigrants used to sell the food within its community, returning soldiers actually made it popular in America and the pizza moved out of the quiet Italian community into mainstream American life.
8. Today in America, October is the National Pizza month since 1987.
9. In America, the pizza industry grosses over $30 billion every year and 17% of U.S. restaurants are actually pizzerias.
10. A survey report says that a minimum of 93% of Americans order and eat pizza at least once every month. On Super Bowl Sunday, 58% of Americans order pizza, which makes it the highest selling day for pizza than any average day in a given calendar year.
11. In India, the most preferred pizza toppings are tofu, minced mutton and pickled ginger but in America, the most preferred topping is pepperoni. Around 2.51 million pounds of pepperoni is sold in US every year and about 36% of pizzas sold in US have pepperoni topping.
12. Frozen pizza was invented in 1957 by Celentano Brothers. During the 1950s frozen pizza was available only in grocery stores. However, within just a few years, this variant became extremely popular and is today available in gas stations, convenience stores, grocery stores and bars.
13. Thin crust pizza is the most popular form of pizza around the globe. In America, deep dish pizza was introduced in Chicago but despite that 61% of pizzas ordered are all thin crust pizza.
14. The risk of esophageal cancer is reduced significantly if pizza is consumed at least once a week.
15. Gennaro Lombardi was the person to open the first pizzeria in America in 1895. This pizzeria was opened in New York.
16. An average American consumes 46 pizza slices in a single year. That’s quite an amount which explains why there are 69,000 pizzerias spread all across America.
17. Throughout the world, 5 billion pizzas are sold every year and Saturday night is considered to be the most popular night for eating pizza.
18. Taking account of all Americans in a single day, it is estimated that 350 slices of pizzas are gobbled up by Americans in every one second. So, if all the slices consumed in a day by Americans are placed side but side, it would cover 100 acres of land!
19. Women are more likely to order vegetarian toppings as opposed to men and pizza delivery people report that women give more tips than men.
20. In Italy, a law was passed that specified the ingredients permitted to be used and processing methods that can be used for a pizza to be called authentic traditional Italian pizza in Italy. Frozen pizzas in no way fall under this category.