The internet is full of fabulous facts about everything from current events to the history basket weaving. Because of this, as we research for our daily content on food trucks, food carts and street food, we stumble upon some items of knowledge that we just did not know. We have decided when these fun facts pop up, that we would share them with our readers in our section titled “Did You Know?”
For today’s Did You Know fun food facts we will look at Pizza.
The Facts: Roughly 1,000 years ago herb-and-spice-covered circles of baked dough grew exceptionally popular in Naples, Italy. Known as focaccia, these rounds were served as an appetizer or a snack.
- In 1830 pizza truly began with the opening of the world’s first pizzeria. Named Port’Alba, the pizzas were cooked in an oven lined with lava from Mount Vesuvius, a volcano located on the Bay of Naples.
- In the 1800s, most Italians thought of pizza as a peasant meal. That changed when a baker named Raffaele Esposito created a margarita pizza for visiting royalty. The king and queen were impressed by the colors of the Italian flag represented by the pizza’s white mozzarella cheese, red tomato sauce, and green basil. Pizza became fashionable overnight and was soon a staple in restaurants all across the country.
- Americans eat approximately 350 slices of pizza per second? Whether you prefer thin crust, deep dish, or regular style.
- September 5th is National Cheese Pizza Day.
- October 11th is National Sausage Pizza Day.
- November 12th is National Pizza with the Works Except Anchovies Day.
- There are approximately 61,269 pizzerias in the United States.
- In 1905, Gennaro Lombardi opened the first licensed American pizzeria, Lombardi’s Pizzeria Napoletana, at 53-1/2 Spring Street in New York City.
- According to a recent Gallup Poll, kids between the ages of 3 to 11 prefer pizza over all other food groups for lunch and dinner.
- Each year, thousands of people involved in the pizza industry attend Pizza Expo, the world’s largest pizza-only trade show. Pizza Expo is held each year in Las Vegas, Nevada.
- Regular thin pizza crust is still the most popular crust, preferred by 61 percent of the population. Thick crust and deep dish tied for second, at 14%. Only 11 percent of the population prefers extra thin.
- The world’s largest pizza was built on October 11, 1987 by Lorenzo Amato and Louis Piancone. The pizza covered 10,000 square feet and measured 140 feet across. It weighed in at 44,457 pounds, consisting of, among other items, 18,174 pounds of flour, 1,103 pounds of water, 6,445 pounds of sauce, 9,375 pounds of cheese and 2,387 pounds of pepperoni. The pie was cut into 94,248 slices and eaten by more than 30,000 spectators at the baking in Havana, Florida.