If you’re looking for a healthy option for dinner, pizza probably isn’t the first thing that comes to mind. Modern pizza has been designed as fast food, and the ingredients are chosen to be cheap and long-lasting. Unfortunately, the ingredients and cooking process used to make most fast food pizzas also tend to be very fatty and empty of nutrients.
So, is there such a thing as a healthy pizza? The answer is yes. Before pizza was modernized into the fast food dish we know and love today, it was a traditional dish with roots dating back centuries. Authentic Neapolitan pizza, or pizza Napoletana, was first invented in the 1800s.
Unlike modern pizzas, every ingredient used in authentic Neapolitan pizza is traditional, natural, and chosen with care. For a pizza to be considered authentic, the cheese must not be processed, the tomato sauce must not be cheap, and the dough must be made of fresh, high-quality flour.
These differences not only make for a completely unique taste, but also for a much healthier dining experience than you might expect. Here are the nutrition facts you need to know about every ingredient in authentic Neapolitan pizza.
Authentic Neapolitan pizza uses a very specific type of mozzarella cheese. Unlike fast food pizzas, which use processed cheese, the traditional Neapolitan method uses mozzarella cheese that is made from Italian water buffalo milk.
The lack of processing makes this cheese a completely different experience in texture, taste, and nutrition. Water buffalo cheese is a good source of calcium, and doesn’t contain the unhealthy aspects of processed cheese. In comparison to the cheese used on modern pizzas, the water buffalo cheese used in traditional Italian cooking carries a much lower risk of cancer and other health problems.
2. Tomato Sauce
Modern pizzas typically use canned and mass-produced pizza sauce. Compared to authentic Neapolitan pizza sauce, the modern sauce is lacking in flavor and nutrients. Traditional Neapolitan pizza doesn’t use just any tomato sauce, though.
For the Neapolitan pizza to be considered authentic, the only tomatoes that may be used for the sauce are San Marzano tomatoes or Roma tomatoes. Both of these tomatoes grow on the volcanic plains near Mount Vesuvius. The soil there is very rich in nutrients from the volcanic ash, and these nutrients work their way into the tomatoes.
Neapolitan tomato sauce is very rich in a number of nutrients that most people aren’t eating enough of. These include Vitamin A, Vitamin B6, Vitamin C, Vitamin E, Vitamin K, dietary fiber, and iron.
Is there a real difference between the different types of dough? The answer is yes. Fast food pizza places use the cheapest and easiest-to-use dough available. This allows the pizza to be dirt cheap, but the quality also goes down.
In traditional Neapolitan pizza, the flour used for the dough must be the finest ground available. Authentic Neapolitan pizzas only use the traditional method for making dough: Salt, flour, and water. This method makes for a very healthy and delicious dough, as there are no extra preservatives added.
Authentic Neapolitan Pizza |Pizzeria Via Mercanti | Toronto, GTA
If you’re looking to experience an authentic and healthy taste of Italy right in the GTA, Pizzeria Via Mercanti has locations all across Toronto for you to visit. Originally only having opened one location in Kensington Market, our huge success quickly led us to open a total of 5 locations to date.
Our specialty is our authentic Neapolitan pizza, which our head chef has decades of experience making. You can eat right and eat well at the same time at Pizza Via Mercanti.
• Unlike modern fast food pizzas, traditional Neapolitan pizza is a quite healthy option.
• All of the ingredients in authentic Neapolitan pizza are high quality, nutritious, and much healthier than their fast food counterparts.
• To experience this traditional Italian dish, contact Pizzeria Via Mercanti today to book a table.