What is pinsa romana?

Wondering why everyone loves pinsa romana? Wonder no longer. 

Here’s everything you need to know about pinsa romana and where to get it:

What is pinsa romana?

Pinsa romana hails from (you guessed it) Rome and stands out from other styles with its impossibly light crust. Despite its relatively thin profile, the oblong base is soft and cloudlike with a crisped edge, meaning that you could easily put down an entire pie by yourself, if you put your mind to it. 

The term “pinsa” comes from the Latin word “pinsere,” which roughly translates to “dough pushed by hand”. In other words, you won’t see pizzaiolos tossing it two inches from the ceiling fan like New York-style.     

What makes the pinsa romana crust so soft?  

Most pinsa romana dough recipes call for the inclusion of multiple flours, a mix that can include rice, soy, and sourdough. The constant, however, is ultra-finely milled Italian “zero”  or “double zero” flour.

The names “0” and “00” (a.k.a. Double Zero or Doppio Zero) come from the grading system used to evaluate how finely milled the flour is and how much bran and wheat germ is left after the grains are processed. Then, the dough is fermented for 48-72 hours, allowing it to develop its complex flavor profile. 

The end result is a dough that has higher-than-usual protein content and, more importantly, a chewy, delectable, and all around heavenly crust.   

Is pinsa romana healthier than other pizzas?

Good question! First, an important reminder: authentic pizza can (and absolutely should) be a part of your regular healthy routine.    

Now, back to pinsa romana. Pinsa romana is beloved, in part, because its dough is easier to digest, thanks to lower amounts of gluten and lots of water. The two or three days of fermentation helps to break down the structure further, making it equally light on the palate and in the tummy.  

Is pinsa romana the same thing as al taglio and other “Roman-style” pizzas?

Rome has blessed the world with a number of different pizza styles, which can lead to confusion when someone mentions “Roman-style pizza.”.

Even though they’re pizza cousins, pinsa romana and pizza al taglio are not the same thing. Al taglio is also made with a lighter crust, but it’s baked in the shape of a rectangle and baked in a steel rectangular pan. After it emerges from the oven, it’s sliced with scissors and sold by weight. Pinsa, meanwhile, is rounder, softer, and usually sold as a personal pie. Also, the pinsa dough is much more heavily hydrated – it’s typically 80% H20, at minimum.

(We should note that al taglio – popularized by Gabriella Bonci and evangelized by culinary experts like Katie Parla – may not the same as pinsa romana, but it’s equally delicious and deserving of your attention.)

So, next time you see “Roman-style pizza” on a menu, you might want to ask whether they mean al taglio, pinsa romana, pizza alla pala, or one of several other Roman pizza types. Then, you should probably order it, regardless of their answer.  

What toppings can I get on a pinsa romana?

Just about anything! You can keep your pinsa traditionally Roman with a classic Margherita (fresh mozzarella, tomato sauce, and basil) or get fancy with any blend of cured ham, fresh veggies, or stalwarts like sausage and pepperoni. 

Personally, we’re partial to mushrooms and fresh mozz on ours, but it all comes down to what you’re craving and what your local shop has in-store for you. Which brings us to the most important question…

Where can I get pinsa romana near me?

There are more and more pinsa romana shops popping up every day. Wanna find the best one in town? Download the Slice app today and get your go-to pizza.

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