During the Naples Days: early 1700s
Today’s Pizza's remarkable journey can be traced back to Naples during the 1700s and early 1800s. Natives wanted an affordable dish they could eat on the go. That turned out to be Pizza.
Neoplitans came up with this version of pie that used tomatoes as toppings. By the 18th century, tomatoes had become a delicacy Europeans discovered the fruit wasn’t poisonous. Tomatoes would become the main ingredient in flat breads and other dishes.
When Neapolitans started to dress their pie with tomatoes, it was the turning point for pizza. Other tasty garnishes added included garlic, olive oil, cheese and herbs.
Flatbread dressed with tomatoes became a common delicacy, particularly among the peasants. It became a favorite food to people who wanted affordable and easy to prepare serving. Even tourists who come to visit Naple love it.
From there, pizza evolved into more varieties like:
Marinara pizza: This variety of pizza used Oregano, garlic and tomatoes as toppings.
Margherita pizza: This pizza used red-cherry tomatoes, mozzarella cheese, and herbs. Pizza Margherita goes back to the time when Queen Margherita of Italy visited Naples and got served with a savory pie. Raffel Esposito, an Italian chef, baked a pie for the visiting royal couple. Raffel made the pie to look like the Italian flag -- using basil leaves, mozzarella cheese, and tomatoes. This Italian customized pie became the Queens’ favorite. In honour of the Queen, the pie got the name Margherita.
By the 19th century, Pizza had established a household name all over Naples. Vendors would sell it on the streets. Also, all meals including breakfast, families would have a pizza. Friends and family would get together, and socialize while enjoying a drink and a slice of pizza. Also, more chefs would experiment with different toppings as pizza’s popularity skyrocketed.