Cracker Style Pizza – Characteristics, History and General Preparation

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What is cracker style pizza, what are its defining characteristics and historical background, what can you expect when eating it, and how is it generally prepared? This post will provide you with all the details about cracker style pizza

General Background and Characteristics

The cracker style pizza, as its name implies, is reminiscent of a cracker due to its thin and crispy texture. It includes various sub-styles of pizza, such as the Tonda Romana and the bar/tavern style pizza (which will be discussed further in the next chapters). This pizza style is commonly found in Rome and the Midwest region of the US, among other places. The toppings on this type of pizza vary depending on the specific style and are typically minimal, resulting in a “light” and easily consumed pizza.

Roots and History of Cracker Style Pizza

The cracker-style pizza also has its origins in Italy. Specifically, one of its earliest variations can be traced back to Rome in the early 20th century, where it was known as the Tonda Romana. This thin and crispy pizza is made from a lean dough that is rolled out and baked at high heat in a wood-fired oven. As the Tonda Romana gained popularity in Italy, it naturally made its way to the US through Italian immigrants. In the US, it continued to evolve and gave rise to other styles such as Chicago thin crust or bar/tavern pizza.

Eating Characteristics of Cracker Style Pizza

First and foremost, cracker style pizza is renowned for its crispy texture, similar to that of a cracker. It is typically thin, with a wonderfully crisp bottom. In certain variations, the toppings cover the entire pizza. Because the dough is so thin, cracker style pizzas are incredibly light. Therefore, they are an excellent option as a first course or a snack for parties, holiday meals, and other social gatherings.

Preparation of Cacker Style Pizza

To achieve its thin crust, the cracker style pizza dough is rolled out using a rolling pin or a dough sheeter. Depending on the type of pizza, it can be baked in a pan or directly on a hearth using various types of ovens (deck, conveyor, wood-fired, etc.).

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