For the inaugural episode of Dining on a Dime: Rome, I’m paying homage to one of Rome’s greatest delights and one of my favorite things to eat: pizza. My stop is Campo de Fiori — a beautiful square near the Palazzo Farnese that literally means “field of flowers” — to a bakery that’s taken the plaza as its namesake: Forno Campo de Fiori. Every day bakers here roll out fresh dough and make some of the best pizza al taglio — literally “pizza by the cut” or, as we might say, by the slice — in the entire city.
This was a reckoning for me. I remember traveling to Italy when I was four or five and being shocked at how the pizza tasted — due mainly to the fact that I was used to the typical American, mozzarella-heavy pizza that’s loaded with processed meats and veggies. At Forno Campo de Fiori, simplicity is the key. The dough is beautifully prepared and given the simplest of treatments, think sliced tender potatoes, or a smattering of crushed Italian tomatoes. Or even, as with a pizza bianca, no toppings at all save from some herbs, brushed olive oil and sea salt.