High, hyper-filled and often enriched with associations of ingredients that in our country would be considered a real heresy. In Italy, American pizza is immediately associated with a junk food of the worst kind, but is it really so?
Pizza is in some ways the most famous dish in America. Variegated, versatile and for this reason perfectly in line with the demands of the U.S. public that, in terms of food, sets no limits to the inventiveness and associations between different ingredients.
Americans love pizza and if on the one hand it is true that for some time now they have learned to know even the most authentic ones of our tradition, such as the Neapolitan, on the other hand it is undeniable how they have developed over time a “current of thought” about this dish.
The most famous example is certainly the Hawaiian Pizza, invented in Canada, with slices of pineapple on the basis of a classic daisy. A proposal that has literally scandalized some Italians and really made others angry. Famous was in fact the reaction of the Neapolitans to a funny candid circulated on the web for some time ago, in which a delivery boy delivered a pizza with pineapple instead of a canonical daisy, arousing in the customers the most picturesque reactions.
But Hawaiian pizza is only the tip of the iceberg of the countless varieties of pizza available on the American market and among these there is (perhaps) some interesting inspiration from which to draw inspiration.
Let’s take a deep breath together, and let’s go and discover them!
American pizzas: a style for every city
It may seem incredible to you, but in many cities or American states you can taste types of “autochthonous” pizza.
In California, for example, where they are crazy about everything that contains avocado because of the culinary influence from Latin America, you can order a California Style, with the addition of slices of avocado, but they are not. California is in fact a typical American pizza, on which two or more “good” things can easily be mixed together, without too many subtleties. For this reason it is not uncommon to see a California Style order with the addition of zucchini flowers, goat cheese, sour-cream and smoked salmon.
Its invention, in its original version with avocado, dates back to the early ’80s and is attributed to Ed LaDou, a French-Californian chef considered “the prince of pizza” by the American people.
Another famous variation is the New York Style, known in the Big Apple as Combat Pizza because of that all-New York habit of eating it everywhere and at all times. With its thin and soft crust, the New York-style pizza is usually served in the daisy, cheese or the famous “pepperoni” version, with the addition of spicy salami (yes: the spicy salami in English is called “pepperoni”).
If you come to the heart of the Midwest, you can taste a Chicago Style, typical of the American capital of the same name. Chicago is a bit like our rustic pizza made with pre-packaged puff pastry, with a high, crispy crust and a consistency that vaguely resembles that of a cake. Its base is made up of a multilayer of tomato, cheese and mozzarella, enriched with ingredients of your choice such as mushrooms, spicy salami (the pepperoni, in fact), minced meat or bacon.
Going further south, in the city of love, you could go into a pizzeria and simply ask for Philly, that is a pizza in the style of Philadelphia. Also known as Philadelphia Tomato Pie, this pizza is a sort of baked pizza, with a soft and thick dough, with sweet tomato sauce and grated cheese. Philly is in some ways similar to the Sfincione, another type of American pizza, whose name derives from that of a traditional focaccia palermitana.
Like the Tomato Pie, the American Sfincione Pizza has a spongy consistency, which allows it to absorb the oils of the pan during cooking, and is usually served with a sauce made of onions, anchovies, tomatoes, caciocavallo and a layer of breadcrumbs on top.
American pizzas: the most extravagant on the market
If you think you’ve heard enough, know that the ones listed above are just some of the most “classic” American pizza proposals!
In a previous article we already talked about extravagant pizzas, but today we decided to exaggerate. Let’s go back to North America (Canada and the United States of North America), to discover the much appreciated Dill Pizza, made with bacon, cheeseburger (ie cheese with minced meat), cheddar cheese and gherkins.
Another original culinary monstrosity is represented by Mac’n Chees, where “Mac” stands for “macaroni”: a pizza with the addition of pasta and cheese, in practice a real tribute to carbohydrate!
A really interesting proposal is the Hot Dog Crust Pizza, with the addition of portions of Hot Dog in the cornice. A pizza that, beyond the ingredients used, takes on a particular shape “on feet”, recognizable and characteristic, able to entertain the public like the other Italian “pizza shapes”.
Finally, the most particular variant: the pizza… with the pizza!
No, you haven’t read it badly. It is an “artist’s pizza” created by the American John Riepenhoff, based on similar proposals widespread throughout the United States. It consists of a maxi pizza covered with many other small pizzas made with different ingredients. A proposal particularly appreciated during buffets or dinners with friends, which takes its cue from the rather common practice of ordering different pizzas to share the slices.
Beyond all, it is clear how much the extravagance of American pizzas is able to teach the importance of not setting limits to inventiveness, leaving customers the freedom to decree the success or otherwise of a culinary proposal.
To dare a little, always in a considered manner and respecting the rules for a quality pizza means investing in new potential proposals for gourmet pizzas, original, innovative and for this reason with an extra gear.
Do you have any interesting ideas? All you have to do is get the ingredients to give substance to your creation!