Can you guess what America’s favorite comfort food is? This same food is also the world’s most popular food to feature on Instagram. It’s an ancient food, cooked by an age-old method, and it comes from the Mediterranean region. It’s pizza!
What was early in the 20th century considered to be an ethnic, poor-person’s food, eaten and prepared in small urban communities inhabited by Italians, is now considered an art form – literally! In fact, after more than 2 million people from around the world lobbied over a 3-year period, in December 2017, UNESCO (a United Nations’ Organization) recognized the Art of Neapolitan ‘Pizzaiuolo’ as part of the Intangible Cultural Heritage of Humanity. The flavors, folklore, and social customs surrounding the pizza-making process appeal to food-lovers around the world.
Wood-fired brick ovens and pizza have been discovered in the excavations of virtually every ancient civilization, with the brick oven reaching something resembling its modern form in ancient Rome. Round ovens built from brick, and even local stone, have been built all over Europe, and especially in Italy, seemingly forever. Virtually every Tuscan farmhouse has, or had, an original brick or stone oven, and many are still being used today.
Although the word ‘pizza’ was documented in different parts of central and southern Italy as early as the year 976, the history of the dish itself is not very well documented. Foods like pizza have been prepared since the Neolithic Age. Records of people adding other ingredients to bread to make it more flavorsome can be found throughout ancient history.No matter how it’s baked or what ingredients are used, the best pizza has the taste of great handmade food. It’s the taste of comfort, family, and community. At Paymon’s Mediterranean Café and Lounge in our new location at 8955 S Eastern Ave, we’re serving up delicious, wood-fired pizza in traditional Mediterranean style. Try any of our 4 Mediterranean-themed pizzas or build your own!