Pizza (pronounced /ˈpiːtsə/ ( listen); Italian: [ˈpit.tsa]) is an oven-baked, flat, disc-shaped bread typically topped with a tomato sauce, cheese (usually mozzarella) and various toppings depending on the culture. Since the original pizza, several other types of pizzas have evolved.
Originating in Neapolitan cuisine, the dish has become popular in many different parts of the world. A shop or restaurant that primarily makes and sells pizzas is called a “pizzeria”. The phrases “pizza parlor”, “pizza place”, “pizza house” and “pizza shop” are used in the United States. The term pizza pie is dialectal, and pie is used for simplicity in some contexts, such as among pizzeria staff.
The Ancient Greeks covered their bread with oils, herbs and cheese. The Romans developed placenta, a sheet of flour topped with cheese and honey and flavored with bay leaves. Modern pizza originated in Italy as the Neapolitan pie with tomato. In 1889 cheese was added.
King Ferdinand I (1751–1825) is said to have disguised himself as a commoner and, in clandestine fashion, visited a poor neighborhood in Naples. One story has it that he wanted to sink his teeth into a food that the queen had banned from the royal court—pizza.