Naanza is the newest phenomenon that is taking Indian restaurants by storm. It packs in the deliciousness of a Naan and a pizza in one awesome combo! I came across this wonder last weekend when in a tussle with my parents. They wanted Indian and I wanted pizza, luckily "Naanza" was sent to us as a divine message *cue heavenly music*. 

So what is it? Is it a pizza? A naan? It's a piece of naan slathered with pizza toppings and one of the many successful hybrid variations of a good slice of pizza. Usually, I do not like my pizza being messed with, but Naanza might be the one variation I truly enjoyed and hence I bring this miracle to you good folks! 

Naan vs Pizza. The Basic Difference. 

pizza, cheese, chicken
Sorcha Beirne

Naan and pizza are quite similar. Their dough preparation requires similar, if not the same ingredients (flour, yeast, water...). The final dough differs a little as Naan is a soft, risen dough while pizza dough (the best kind) should have a certain degree of elasticity. Naan is topped with light brushes of butter, spices and finely chopped herbs while pizza is slathered with whatever topping you can dream of.

The primary difference between a naan and a pizza dough lies in their cooking methods. A pizza, to trace the origins, is cooked in a stone oven. A naan, on the other hand, is cooked in a tandoor. A tandoor is like an upturned vessel of clay or metal which is heated using charcoal from the bottom. Pieces of the Naan dough are rolled out and slapped to the walls of this heated vessel. They become crunchy with a hint of charcoal taste at the bottom and soft on top. 

 Why Naanza?

So what makes Naanza any more different than a good slice of your trusty pizza? Why should you give Naanza a try in a world full of triple cheese pizzas that come in a pizza box made of pizza?

My top most reason is that a Naanza packs in the goodness of two cuisines in one dish. The tomato sauce (with an Indian Tadka twist, if you prefer) with oodles of cheese tastes amazing with chicken tikka pieces in the middle.

The base and the toppings provide immense room for invention! Make the base Indian and the topping Italian, Mexican, or Jamaican—the sky is the limit with Naanza.

egg, bread, vegetable, toast, dairy product, spinach
Sasha Kran

A Naanza crust is better on multiple levels. When eating pizza, one explicitly orders a thin crust. With Naanza, the thinnest of thin crusts is given already. Unlike the normal thin crusts, which get soggy under the weight of the toppings, a Naanza crust sustains (true story) while maintaining its crunchiness. It also packs a punch of flavor. The Naan remains buttery and flaky, unlike the dry doughy pizza base. The charcoal heat that cooks the Naan also gives it rustic taste and crunch missing in a pizza base!

While I adore my pizza, I definitely don’t mind the occasional twist of Punjabi-Italian hybrid that a Naanza offers. Try beginning your day with this breakfast Naanza