Pizza al Taglio ... Newcomer from Rome!

On a recent visit to Italy, we of course did our homage to pizza in Naples and sampled our way through many great pizzas which we are still recreating in our home outdoor oven.  This has been our long-time favorite pizza style and only solidifies its position with each trip to the birthplace of pizza.  Traditional I know, but it is hard to argue with a pizza which is still king in Italy and not far behind New York style pizza in the US.

This trip however, we spent more time in Rome and became re-acquainted with one of their signature pizzas … pizza al Taglio, … and  wow !!  Rome is on the map too when it comes to great pizza.  Pizza al Taglio is quite unlike Neapolitan pizza, but is outstanding when authentically made.   A thicker crust than Neapolitan, no puffy edges, but a light and airy crust throughout.  The crust is thinner than focaccia and not as spongy, thinner than your typical Sicilian, Chicago, or Detroit style too.  It is soft, with large air pockets, and is very flavorful.  The dough has a kind of salty, nutty taste coming from its long, cold fermentation process and a light airy texture, but with a crispy bottom which seems to be the perfect combination of the thin vs thick crust pizza style debate.

The toppings are quite varied as well.  Taglio pizza often comes in and out of the oven a few times during cooking, starting with a base sauce and some heartier toppings, like thinly sliced potatoes, soppressata, while the more delicate toppings come midway through the baking, and when done and just before serving, the final room temperature or cold toppings are added ( maybe some arugula, fresh Parmigiana, some salad greens, or some fresh burrata. 

While you can find great pizza al Taglio in big US cities, unfortunately it is not too common elsewhere.   A recent Pizza Today article suggests this is changing and this will be the year of Pizza al Taglia in the US.  If you can’t wait for it to come to your local pizzeria,  try Bonci (Chicago), Rock Pizza Scissors (New York), Rione (Philadelphia), or Alice Pizza (Philadelphia).

Better yet make, your own !   We are still testing out recipes for our home and outdoor ovens so keep an eye on this space.  But for now to get you started, check out: 

https://www.americastestkitchen.com/cooksillustrated/articles/1281-introducing-pizza-al-taglio

Fare ottima pizza !!

Frank B.

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