No matter how you slice it (or cut it in this case), Roman-style pizza al taglio may seem like a mouthful to say, but the concept is simple. Pizza al taglio is sold by the cut or slice, but it’s different than the large New York-style slice that’s triangular and meant to be folded in half. Pizza al taglio is rectangular pizza cut in either rectangular or square slices.
Roman-style pizza al taglio may seem like a mouthful, but it’s quite a simple concept. It’s pizza by the cut or slice, but not what you probably think. We’re not talking about a New York-style slice that’s big, triangular and meant to be folded in half. We’re talking about a rectangular pizza cut in rectangular or square slices.
Generally sold by the weight, pizza al taglio is not traditionally a meal that’s ordered to enjoy at a table. Instead, eating this pizza is more casual. Grab a slice and head out to the patio or street — after all, it is the perfect street food, weather permitting! Another fun note about Roman-style pizza al taglio: it’s traditionally cut with scissors, not pizza cutters.
Given the name, it should come as no surprise that this style of pizza was invented in Rome and is common throughout the Eternal City. In the United States, pizza al taglio is gaining in popularity due to specialists like Rome’s esteemed pizzaiolo, Gabriele Bonci, who made news recently when he opened Bonci in Chicago, a pizzeria specializing in Roman-style pizza al taglio. The restaurant has received rave reviews, and there are plans to bring the concept to more people throughout the United States.
Making pizza al taglio
Feeling inspired? Let’s bake. First up, the crust, which resembles a high-quality artisan bread. It’s a highly hydrated dough that can be cold fermented for up to a couple of days. This combination gives the crust a crisp bottom with a light, airy crust. Big holes in the crust equal quality and give consumers the feeling they are eating something light but unbelievably satisfying.
You don’t need any special type of oven to make pizza al taglio. Wood-burning ovens are great, but electric or gas will work just fine, as will configurations such as hearth, deck or rack ovens.
How do I top it?
Get creative. Roman-style pizza al taglio is not mired in tradition when it comes to toppings. Experiment with sauces and toppings and think not only about the taste, but also about how it will look in a display case. For mainstream consumers, start with a margherita pizza. For more adventurous customers, go with prosciutto, potato and rosemary. Top with vegetables and herbs to bring seasonal attributes to your menu and stress the freshness of the pizza. Pizza chains and independent pizzerias have traditional toppings like pepperoni, sausage and mozzarella covered. Focus on trending global flavors and in-season vegetables and herbs to make these pizzas stand out and provide a “lighter” lunch fare.
Once the toppings are on and the pizzas are ready for sale, try displaying them in your bakery cases just like cakes and pastries. In Rome, pizza al taglio is a visual feast with multiple varieties on display for consumers to pick a topping and weight of their slice.
What type of pans do I need?
Although you won’t need a special oven to add Roman-style pizza al taglio to your menu, you will need special pans. LloydPans’ Roman-style pizza al taglio pans were designed to replicate the size of classic roman pans. Our full-size pizza al taglio pans are 15.75 inches by 23.62 inches. We also offer a half-size pan at 7.87 inches by 23.62 inches.
Although we stuck with custom sizes for our pans, our coating system and pan construction definitely don’t harken back to Roman days of yore. We constructed our Roman-style pizza al taglio pans with heavy 12-gauge aluminum and then applied our popular Pre-Seasoned Tuff-Kote (PSTK®) coating. This pan is durable and features a permanent stick-resistant coating that also is metal utensil safe. It’s the perfect pan for baking pizzas and serving the square slices from.