4 Fishy Pizza Trends That Will Make You Think Anchovies Aren’t So Bad After All

When you visit your favorite restaurant, odds are you don’t order anchovies on your pizza. In the United States, the most common pizza topping is pepperoni, followed by sausage: pigs are a well-represented culinary demographic. Anchovies are out of fashion — only 2% of diners favor this savory little fish.

To find out how anchovies got to be a thing in the first place, we must go back to Italy. In the early days, Neapolitan sailors would lunch on pizza marinara. This was a hearty meal for people who worked hard. It consisted of a crust, marinara sauce, and anchovies preserved in oil.

Now anchovies are just a vestigial menu item, waiting for restaurant evolution to get rid of them completely. Or are they? Once you leave the shores of America, things start to look a little — fishy.

Pizza restaurants in Japan serve up pies featuring shrimp, eel, scallops in their shells, and — for some reason — mayonnaise. Still, the oddest topping has got to be squid. That’s right. Ink-squirting, eight-armed monsters, perched on a crispy, cheesy crust and served up for your dining pleasure. This is actually a traditional topping for a pizza-like substance called Okonomiyaki, which also contains pork, noodles and cabbage.

In Germany, people love Thunfish pizza. Sounds exotic, right? Thunfish is canned tuna.  It can be used as the main topping, or combined with vegetables. The whole thing gets a nice layer of cheese to finish it off.

Atum pizza is a big hit in Brazil. This delicacy has a thin, tender crust, and is normally eaten with a fork. It is topped with tomato sauce, onions, and grated fresh tuna baked into the cheese.

The Russians also like tuna on pizza — but they don’t stop there. The pie known as Mockba also includes sardines, mackerel, and salmon. Other toppings include onions and peppers. It’s served cold, which is probably a good thing.

Australians enjoy shrimp and pineapple pizza. Compared to some of the other entries on this list, that may seem a little tame, but the Aussies never back down from a challenge. Their other favorite toppings include emu and crocodile. That’s right. Crocodile. Sure, it’s not a fish, but how many other countries can say they put man-eating reptiles on a pizza?

While globalization may have its virtues, there’s little chance your local pizzeria will be adding mackerel or octopus to its menu soon. But that doesn’t mean you can’t have a little taste of the sea.

Next time you go for pizza at a restaurant like Riverview Restaurant & Tavern, try something different. Give the lonely anchovy a chance. Those Neapolitan sailors might have been onto something.

Author: Anne Mackay

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