Philadelphia, PA - "Tomato Pie" continues to be a favorite in the Philadelphia region. So much so that it has even created a debate at a recent Philly pizza event. Is it a Pizza or Not? Also, See... Best Tomato Pies in Philadelphia
Italian Tomato Pie
The tomato pie is often described as an Italian-American oven-baked baked good comprised of a thick, porous dough coated with tomato sauce. It's typically topped or sprinkled with cheese and either served right from the oven or permitted to cool down and eaten at room temperature or reheated.
Philly Tomato Pie
Tomato pies in Philadelphia have been sold by now closed "Iannelli's Bakery" as early as 1910. Like Sicilian pizza, the tomato pie is often oven-baked in rectangular pans then served up in square slices. It first showed up in a 1903 article published by the New-York Tribune on Italian-American foods describing an earlier variation of today's tomato pie.
What's the difference between pizza and tomato pie?
The terms Tomato Pies and Pizza, though, sort of overlap, but they are generally unique. Tomato Pie can be described as a thick crust along with tomato sauce, and in some cases topped with fresh tomatoes as well as a sprinkle of Parmesan or Ramano cheese. It generally does not come with other garnishes or toppings. Tomato Pie's are also typically regional and are very popular in New England, Trenton, NJ, and the Philadelphia region.
Pizza, on the other hand, can have either a thick crust or a thin crust. However, it always has cheese on it, and yet it will also have either tomato sauce, white sauce, or olive oil and garlic. Pizza furthermore is often served up with other garnishes or toppings such as pepperoni, sausage, mushrooms, as well as assorted vegetables.
Terms for Tomato Pie
Various other terms for the tomato pie include; gravy pie, church pie in Philadelphia, strip pizza, red bread, party pizza, and in Rhode Island, it's known as bakery pizza.
Whatever you want to call it, we can agree on this; Philly and Jersey love Tomato Pies, although the debate will most likely continue!