Have you ever had a pizza with French fries on it?
My family hadn’t until my husband accidently ordered it in Venice - and probably became the oldest person there to ever do so!
While in Rome over the winter holiday last year, my family ate a lot of pizza. When I say a lot, I mean eating it at least once a day, every day during our 10-day holiday.
For lunch, we’d often seek out a pizza al taglio. There, we’d head to the counter and point to our chosen pizza. Then, the person at the counter would cut a slice - as big or as little as we wanted - with scissors and put it into the oven for us. We'd then grab a stool at the counter and dive in.
It was there, in these pizza al taglios, where we'd try lots of little slices of many different kinds of pizza.
Pizza with fresh mozzarella and tomato sauce.
Pizza with zucchini blossoms and pecorino.
Pizza with sausage.
And, the list - and slices - go on...
Quickly, one of our favorite pizzas became pizza con patate, with thinly sliced potatoes laid across the top. It was simple and delicious.
At the restaurants we frequented for dinner each night, we were served plate-sized pizzas – just perfect to totally and utterly stafisfy your appetite. Our sons often opted for the Margherita with mozzarella, tomato sauce and basil. I always stuck with my consistent favorite - the Capriccosa with prosciutto, artichoke hearts, mushrooms and black olives – and if I was lucky – a sunny-side up egg. But, my husband proved more adventurous.
My husband would often try other pizzas with broccoli, argula and other ingredients – often hoping for the best given our limited knowledge of the Italian language. And, he always did well.
Sometimes the pizza came with a red sauce (tomato sauce) and sometimes with a white sauce (olive oil). But, it was always good and completely satisfying, especially when paired with a house wine.
And, then we ordered pizza for lunch during our two-day excursion to Venice.
After getting chilled from exploring the Venetian canals on our first few hours in the Italian city, we tried to find a pizza al taglio with indoor seating. After finding a few places without any seating (and being daunted by the idea of sitting outside along the chilly banks of a canal), we decided to duck into an inviting restaurant filled with other families.
Having just come to Venice on the train from Rome, our eyes immediately went to the pizza section of the laminated restaurant menu.
While I opted for my usual favorite, my sons were a little more daring and went with the a sausage-like pizza that was basically a Margherita pizza with "hot dog." But, it being lunchtime, my husband opted for the one pizza with "patata."
When the pizzas arrived, we were reminded that language is indeed a tricky thing.
Instead of getting a white pizza lined with thinly sliced potatoes, as he had hoped, my husband got a margherita pizza – piled high with French fries.
While my husband was in shock, our sons found it delightful – and promptly asked if they could pile the French fries on their pizzas. Yes, turning theirs into "hot dog" and fries pizzas. A kids’ dream come true!
When we asked the waiter about the pizza, he said it’s very popular in Venice – with little kids. And, we can see why!
Now, we’ll always take a closer look when ordering a pizza con patate again.
While my husband may hesitate before he orders one again, I know my sons will be quick to order one for themselves!
Have you ever incorrectly ordered a dish when traveling in a different country? Have you ever had "pizza with French firies?" Share your experiences in the comments below.
Want to have new Raising World Citizens blog posts delivered straight to your email inbox? Then, please enter your email address in the below box and click on "create subscription." My list is completely spam free and you can opt out at any time.