The low-down on the five basic pies you’ll find at most pizzerias:
One for the pizza purists, this favourite from Naples has a charred, pillowy crust. Expect simple and fresh ingredients such as basil, olive oil, tomatoes and mozzarella. It’s usually served whole and folded in half.
The base is drizzled with olive oil before baking, so you get a crust that’s crisp, yet able to withstand weighty ingredients without collapsing. It’s sold in rectangular slabs and usually eaten as a quick takeaway meal.
The pie has its origins in Palermo, a city in Sicily. Known as the sfincione (“thick sponge”), it has a fluffy and spongy bread base topped with meatless tomato sauce, then covered with breadcrumbs and grated cheese.
This was inspired by the Neapolitan, after early Italian immigrants entered the United States. The crust is as thin as the Neapolitan’s, but it’s a bigger pie. It’s usually eaten on the go. Do the “New York fold” to keep the toppings from falling off, by creating a “V” shape with the slice’s crust.
This is a thick pie with a deliciously flaky and buttery crust. Add chunky sauce and gooey cheese, and you’re looking at a knife-and-fork affair.