There’s no better feeling in the world than a warm pizza box on your lap.Kevin James
Truer words have, perhaps, never been spoken. Pizza is a wonderful thing, and there’s really no such thing as bad pizza, even the worst pizza is still pretty good. Pizza has been around for an incredibly long time, the word itself going back as far as 997 AD in southern Italy.
National Pizza Month gives lovers of this delicious dish an entire month to celebrate amazing food, and more than ample time (31 whole days!) to enjoy it in all its variations and permutations. Small, large, circle, square, and so much more!
Let’s get started by learning about National Pizza Month:
History of National Pizza Month
The History of National Pizza Month is of course, at least in part, attributed to the history of this delicious dish itself: Pizza. As mentioned above, the term goes back more than one thousand years to when the idea of a flatbread was created. The Pizza was likely derived from a version of what we now know as Focaccia bread, a roman flatbread commonly served with toppings.
From that time moving forward, there have been developments that slowly led to the wonderful comfort food that the world knows and loves as pizza.
Now, this doesn’t mean that it was a straight line, mind you, not at all. Some say that Roman soldiers created the first pizza when they added cheese and olive oil to Matzah bread. But one thing is known for certain, pizza as we know it today came into being as a result of the discovery of the tomato in the Americas, and its return to Europe in the 16th century.
So where did the pizza begin? The pizza as a flatbread with a tomato sauce started in Naples and quickly became popular. Until the 1830’s it was almost exclusively sold from open-air stands and out of pizza bakeries, a tradition that is largely followed even today.
It morphed into something closer to what we know today as “pizza” sometime around the 18th or 19th centuries in Naples, Italy.
Although no one was happy with the devastating effects of World War II, one of the positives was that allied troops who had been stationed in Italy brought the idea of pizza back to their home countries.
One other fun piece of trivia is the source of the ‘marinara’ sauce is the traditional tomato sauce. Have you ever wondered why it’s called marinara? Because it was created by “La Marinara” the mariner’s wife, to serve to her seafaring husband upon return from fishing the Bay of Naples.
National Pizza Month was originally created as an American observance and was celebrated for the first time in October 1984. It was created by Gerry Durnell, publisher of Pizza Today, a magazine dedicated to this delicious pie. For more than 30 years, this month has been a fitting tribute to this iconic dish.
Get ready to celebrate National Pizza Month!
How to Celebrate National Pizza Month
An entire month to celebrate everything beautiful and tasty about pizza? Well, that might be enough time to get started on some of these ideas:
Eat Pizza, Of Course!
If we have to encourage you to go out and eat all the pizza you can get your hands on this month, we’re not entirely certain that National Pizza Month is for you. Who needs encouragement to celebrate this month?
Order in, go out to a local pizza joint and order a pitcher of beer or soft drinks, or just enjoy eating some homemade pizza in front of a movie. Whatever way you slice it, National Pizza Month is meant to be enjoyed for thirty-one whole delicious days!
Make Pizza at Home
Whether making dough from scratch or picking up a premade refrigerated dough, making pizza at home can be a fun activity for the whole family. Let every member of the family custom create their own personal pizza pies, bake them up, and enjoy!
Try Out Some New and Different Pizza Toppings
Well, if you’re wanting to truly honor the pizza, then it’s time to try some new toppings on your pizza and experience the full range of what the pizza can be! Go out, try something new, and enjoy pizza!
Consider these ideas for unique pizza toppings to get started with:
- Chipotle Cajun Shrimp and Guacamole Pizza. Just the name is a mouthful, but the flavor of this pizza goes far beyond. Cook shrimp with cajun and creole seasoning, spread guacamole over pizza dough like a “sauce”, add shrimp and cheese. Then bake.
- Thanksgiving Day Leftover Pizza. Now this is a fun one! On Black Friday when everyone is sick of the leftovers from the previous day’s festivities, go ahead and pile those bits and pieces onto a prepared crust and pop it in the oven. Used mashed sweet potatoes as the “sauce”. Then spread out turkey strips, corn, cranberry sauce, brussel sprouts and shredded cheese on top. Delicious!
- Potato and Burrata Pizza. Add thin slices of potatoes to pizza dough that is covered in lemon basil pesto. Top with piles of burrata cheese and bake for a simply delicious and unique type of pizza.
- Charred Brussel Sprouts Pizza with Sage Brown Butter. The title practically gives away the recipe! Char some brussel sprouts, brown some butter with sage to drizzle on top, add some prosciutto, and finish off with provolone and fontina cheese. After baking, top with a sprinkling of pomegranate seeds for color and flavor.