The United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) will be petitioned this year to recognize authentic Neapolitan pizza as a global heritage treasure. Italy boasts a long list of recognized cultural treasures and World Heritage sites, many of them music-, architecture- and cuisine-related, and this year, the official preparation method for this simple, perfect food may join it.

By definition, this ancient pizza recipe must contain type 0 or 00 wheat flour, natural yeast, salt, water, San Marzano tomato sauce, buffalo mozzarella, extra-virgin olive oil and basil. But before you say, “Hey, I can create an intangible cultural treasure right in my kitchen,” the pizza also has to be fired in a 900-degree oak-fired oven for no more than 90 seconds in order to achieve its signature charred, blistered, 1/8-inch-thick crust. This process requires expertise, and is not something even the most Italian pizza robot can replicate.

(Photo: basheertome/Flickr)
Got one of these in your kitchen? Hey, you can make a global culinary treasure! (Photo: basheertome/Flickr.)

The Italian National Commission will officially propose “the art of the Neapolitan pizza maker” as a notable achievement in human history, taking individual skill level, type and heat of oven, and time cooked into account, before a committee with representatives of 200 countries. The world’s best pizza is not something to be taken lightly.