• Italy's news in English
 
app_header_v3
Italy finally offers Neopolitan pizza for Unesco menu
Italian pizza maker masterchef Gennaro Cervone gives a lesson of homemade pizza during the pizza festival in Naples in 2014. Photo: Mario Laporta/AFP

Italy finally offers Neopolitan pizza for Unesco menu

The Local/AFP · 4 Mar 2016, 13:34

Published: 04 Mar 2016 13:34 GMT+01:00

The plan to get “the art of the Neopolitian pizza maker” protected has been mooted for some time, but the Italian National Commission for Unesco has now agreed on a proposal by the Ministry of Agriculture to endeavour to get the culinary skill listed because “it represents Italy in the world”.

“We continue to value ‘made in Italy’, especially after the success of Milan Expo last year,” Agriculture Minister Maurizio Martina told Ansa.

The dossier will now be sent to Unesco, where it will begin a long and complex negotiation process involving 200 countries before a decision is made in 2017.

Pierluigi Petrillo, the legal editor for the dossier, said the process would be especially challenging because, until now, “Unesco has never listed a cultural tradition linked to food production”.

The list "is composed of intangible heritage elements that concerned communities and states parties consider require urgent measures to keep them alive", according to the Unesco website.

Naples has long been determined to maintain its reputation as the spiritual home of one of the world's favourite foods.

Photo: Joanne Wann

Neapolitan pizza is characterised by its raised crust rendered golden by oven cooking, by the crispy yet tender consistency of its pastry, and by its acid tomato taste, along with aromas of oregano, garlic, basil and mozzarella.

The role of the pizza maker, or pizzaiolo, and the wood-fire oven are also determining characteristics of the Neapolitan pizza.

The base should be no more than 3 millimetres (about an eighth of an inch) thick and cooked for between 60 and 90 seconds in a stone oven with an oak-wood fire.

Story continues below…

The Neapolitan pizza was invented in the southern Italian city between 1715 and 1725, with the world-famous Margherita variant first cooked up in 1889.

Tradition has it that Queen Margherita of Savoy asked one of Naples' famed pizzaiole to come up with a dish for the people.

The result, which provides the basis for most pizzas enjoyed around the world, represented the colours of recently unified Italy: green basil, white mozzarella and red tomatoes. 

For more news from Italy, join us on Facebook and Twitter.

The Local/AFP (news@thelocal.it)

Your comments about this article

Today's headlines
Pope visits Armenian genocide memorial
Francis laid a wreath and prayed at the Tsitsernakaberd site. Photo: AFP

Pope Francis on Saturday issued a rallying cry to protect memory at the Armenian genocide memorial in Yerevan, on day two of a trip likely to stir tensions with Turkey.

Italians in the UK: 'After all these years, we feel unwanted'
Thousands of young Italians have moved to London in recent years. Photo: TJ Morris

Italian expats in the UK shared feelings of anger, fear and confusion after Britain voted to leave the EU. And they never even got a say.

How to get Italian citizenship (or at least stay forever)
Photo: Wikimedia Commons

Looking to stay in Italy long term? Here's how.

Where does Britain's exit from the EU leave Italy?
(L) Nigel Farage, leader of Ukip, which campaigned for Britain to leave the EU and (R) Italian Prime Minister Matteo Renzi. Photos: Geoff Caddick/Alberto Pizzoli/AFP

Britain may have taken a leap into the dark, but this is what's expected in Italy.

Europe needs renovating after Brexit: Renzi
Italian Prime Minister, Matteo Renzi, has called on the remaining EU members to reorganize the EU. Photo: Alberto Pizzoli/AFP

Renzi said it was "not an easy day."

'Brexit is a disaster for Great Britain': WW2 veteran
Harry Shindler MBE. Photo: Rosie Scammell

“I would have thought that 70 years of peace would have been sufficient for people to say ‘we’re not going to change’ anything."

Renzi calls urgent meeting as Italy's far-right rejoice Brexit
Italy's Prime Minister, Matteo Renzi, summoned the country's top economic minds to his home on Friday morning. Photo: Filippo Monteforte/AFP

Italy's Prime Minister, Matteo Renzi, called an extraordinary meeting on Friday morning as global markets were plunged into turmoil by the UK's shock decision to leave the EU.

Brits in Italy left stunned after UK votes for Brexit
Britons on Thursday voted to leave the EU. Photo: Emanuel Dunand/AFP

Britons in Italy woke up to the shocking news on Friday that the UK has voted to leave the EU, sending the pound crashing and fuelling concerns about their future on the continent.

Venice beaches offer 'sun or your money back' deal
Venice beaches are offering 'weather insurance' in a bid to boost visitor numbers this summer. Photo: Darkbeach/Flickr

Authorities hope the move will attract more beachgoers.

Berlusconi plots Forza Italia relaunch from hospital bed
Silvio Berlusconi is reportedly hoping to relaunch his political party, Forza Italia. Photo: Alberto Solaro/AFP

Following a near-fatal heart attack and surgery to replace his aortic valve, the 80-year-old mogul shows no sign of slowing down.

Sponsored Article
Education abroad: How to find an international school
Politics
Has the time come for Italy’s Five Star Movement to shine?
Society
Why Italy must change after young woman’s brutal murder
Politics
Is Italy's Five Star up to the challenge of running Rome?
Sponsored Article
Why you should attend an international job fair
Culture
Six of the most bizarre Italian foods everyone should try
Culture
Italian restaurant crowned the best in the world
Travel
Ten breathtaking Italian gems you've never heard of
National
Eritrean held in Italy denies being trafficking kingpin
Health
Italian man 'turns French' after brain injury
Travel
Six reasons why South Tyrol will absolutely blow your mind
National
Why Italy's facing another tough summer
Photo: Alberto Pizzoli/AFP
Politics
Five reasons Rome's mayoral elections actually matter
Travel
Ten Airbnb apartments where you'll feel at home in Rome
Politics
Quiz: Silvio Berlusconi versus Donald Trump - who said it?
National
Crew who sunk with WWII sub 'wanted to be found': relative
Culture
Why the average ancient Roman worker was dead by 30
Did a Nazi official save Ponte Vecchio from destruction?
National
How the brutal murder of an anti-mafia hero altered Sicily
Travel
These are the best beaches within easy reach of Rome
National
Why Italians are falling out of love with the EU
Business & Money
Foreign, female and a self-made success in arduous Italy
2,537
jobs available