NEAPOLI­TAN ART OF PIZZA-MAK­ING GAINS UNESCO STA­TUS.

Regina Leader-Post - - NP -

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UNESCO’S DE­CI­SION

The United Na­tions has de­cided to add the Neapoli­tan art of pizza-mak­ing to its list of “in­tan­gi­ble heritage.” The craft of the piz­za­iuolo, the piz­za­maker who tosses his swirling dough into the air, was given the cov­eted sta­tus Thurs­day by the world heritage com­mit­tee of UNESCO.

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THE CAM­PAIGN

The de­ci­sion came af­ter a pe­ti­tion signed by two mil­lion Ital­ians, many of them ag­grieved at the culi­nary abom­i­na­tions they wit­ness abroad, such as top­ping pizza with pineap­ple, may­on­naise and even cannabis. It is not just the flam­boy­ant twirling of dough into the air that con­vinced the com­mit­tee, but also the songs and cus­toms that sur­round the process.

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A STO­RIED PAST

Legend has it that the Pizza Margherita was created in 1889 to cel­e­brate a visit from Queen Margherita of Savoy. Its three main in­gre­di­ents, toma­toes, moz­zarella and basil, re­flect the na­tional colours of Italy.

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HOW TO MAKE A NEAPOLI­TAN PIZZA

Ac­cord­ing to the in­ter­na­tional reg­u­la­tions of the True Neapoli­tan Pizza As­so­ci­a­tion, dough is made from only wa­ter, sea salt, yeast and flour. It is leav­ened and then rolled out us­ing a mo­tion from the cen­tre out­ward by hand — never with a rolling pin or a me­chan­i­cal press. The oil must be ex­tra vir­gin olive oil, the toma­toes must be of the San Marzano va­ri­ety and the cheese must be buf­falo moz­zarella or fior di latte, made from cows’ milk. The cook­ing should be done only in a wood­fired oven be­tween 430C and 480C. The pizza need be baked for only 60-90 sec­onds.

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WHAT ITAL­IANS ARE SAY­ING

Mau­r­izio Martina, Italy’s min­is­ter for agri­cul­ture, food and forestry, tweeted: “Vic­tory! This is an­other step toward the pro­tec­tion of Italy’s food and wine heritage world­wide.”

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