Today, February 9, is National Pizza Day – hooray! And although pizza did not originate in the United States, more than 3 billion pizzas are eaten every year here in America.
I really enjoy these national days of recognition because they give me a challenge to accomplish (sometimes, but not always, cooking) plus photographing the subject of that day’s hero.
Today, of course, I made a pizza and photographed it! (Was any of the pizza consumed after pictures? Affirmative!)
Pizza Fun Facts – Did You Know?
Before we get to my pizza from today, a few quick facts I learned about pizza when preparing for today’s blog post by The Daily Artisan:
- Home of Pizza: Pizza was invented in Naples, Italy, and was created as an inexpensive food that could be eaten quickly by working-poor citizens.
- Pizza Comes to United States: Until the 1940s, pizza was barely known outside of Italy. However, when Naples immigrants flocked to New York for jobs, they brought with them the habit of eating flatbread with toppings – and it quickly became a hit in the United States.
- Pizza Styles: In 1943, Chicago invented the deep dish pizza – starting an age-old debate over what’s the best pizza style: thin, deep dish, hand tossed, round, rectangular, and a host named for their cities of origin like Detroit, California, New York, Chicago, St. Louis, and Philadelphia.
- Pizza Restaurant Chains: In 1958, the leading pizza chain was founded – Pizza Hut, still ranked as the most popular choice for consumers (followed next by Papa John’s, and then Domino’s).
- How Many Slices do Americans Eat Each Year: The 3 billion pizzas eaten annually in the United States equate to 46 slices per person every year!
- Who Likes Pizza: On a survey with the question, “Do You Like Pizza?,” a whopping 98% said yes, and only 2% said they don’t like it.
- How Often Do We Eat It: 30% of Americans eat pizza at least once a week.
- Favorite Toppings: As for favorite toppings – in order from the top, they are – cheese, pepperoni, sausage, mushroom, bacon, onions, green peppers, black olives, Canadian bacon, and pineapple.
- $53.8 Billion in U.S. Revenue in 2022: The market size of the pizza restaurants industry in the United States in 2022 is valued at $53.8 billion in revenue!
My Tribute to National Pizza Day 2022!
To avoid starting the big pizza preferences debate, I’ll keep my opinions on pizza somewhat limited by giving only a few thoughts!
#1: For the life of me, I don’t get pineapple or other fruits on pizza – yes, on pastry for things like galettes which I’ve previously blogged about – but I don’t want a sweet fruit anywhere NEAR my beloved tomato sauce! (Yes, I’ve heard the term “dessert pizza.” I’m just not buying it.)
#2: Black olives have no place in my life, thank you very much. None.
#3: Garlic is something I frequently cook with, but I prefer it only in a subtle way with pizza. I smash a peeled garlic clove, and then rub it over the pizza dough before any of the toppings go on. The cooking heat under the crust makes the garlic permeate up through the toppings for a delicious, subtle flavor.
Other than those few things, I’m pretty open to different types of pizza.
Today I made my pizza with tomato sauce, sausage, red onions, cherry tomatoes, sharp cheddar cheese, parmesan cheese, garlic (see above), olive oil, red pepper flakes (baked on top with everything else instead of sprinkled on after cooking), and torn fresh basil leaves (placed on top after the pizza is cooked).
And here’s a tip for anyone photographing your foods – do it on a full stomach or the mouth-watering smells will make you want to lay down your camera and pick up your piece of pizza, in today’s case!
My pizza survived until all the photographs were taken, and of course there should be at least one picture with a bite or two taken out of a slice … no arm-twisting necessary.
Here are some more photos of my celebration pizza – and I hope you also enjoyed pizza today on our 2022 National Pizza Day!
Did you celebrate National Pizza Day today? What’s your favorite pizza? Please comment below!