Pasta
&
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OCTOBER CELEBRATES PASTA & PIZZA

 

And Dean Martin mentions both in his famous song about love:

When the moon hits your eye like a big-a pizza pie, that's amore.
When the world seems to shine like you've had too much wine, that's amore.

Bells will ring ting-a-ling-a-ling, ting-a-ling-a-ling and you'll sing "Vita bella,"
Hearts will play tippi-tippi-tay, tippi-tippi-tay, like a gay Tarantella. Lucky fella

When the stars make you drool just-a like pasta fazool, that's amore.
When you dance down the street with a cloud at your feet, you're in love.
When you walk in a dream but you know you're not dreamin', Signore,
'Scusami, but you see back in old Napoli, that's amore.
 


So, do you think you know your pasta and pizza trivia? Here's a chance to prove

you're the big cheese, not a meatball;

that you belong in the upper crust of food historians, not a noodle-brain;

that you're the top tomato.

Good luck!

(To find the answers, hover your mouse over the tomato after each question.

Answers also appear at the end of the quiz.)

 

                       

 

Here's the dish on pasta

1. During Pre-Revolutionary America when the song "Yankee Doodle" first became popular, the word macaroni in the line that reads "stuck a feather in his hat and called it macaroni" didn't refer to the pasta. But why?  In 18th century England, macaroni was a synonym for

A) good friends and family

B) perfection and excellence

C) happiness and loyalty

D) freedom and liberty

1. B) perfection and excellence - "Macaroni" became known as a fancy and overdressed ("dandy") style of Italian clothing widely imitated in England at the time. So by just sticking a feather in his cap and calling himself a "Macaroni", Yankee Doodle was proudly proclaiming himself to be a country bumpkin (an awkward and unsophisticated person), because that was how the English regarded most colonials at that time.  The word macaroni thus came to mean "dandy", or "fop", or "dude" at the time.

 

2. A fork is the only utensil that may be used to eat spaghetti while anyone is looking, according to

A) Ann Landers

B) the National Pasta Association

C) Miss Manners

D) the Italian Restaurant Association

2. C) Miss Manners – a.k.a. Judith Martin

 

3. In the 13th century, quality standards for pasta were established by

A) the Pope

B) the Italian government

C) restaurant owners in Rome

D) master cooks in Italy

3. A) the Pope

 

4. The word "pasta" comes from the Italian for

A) noodles

B) bread

C) paste

D) flour

4. C) paste - meaning a combination of flour and water - including the many forms of spaghetti, macaroni, and egg noodles. The term pasta has always been used on Italian restaurant menus to encompass all the various pasta offerings.

 

5. Tripolini or "little bows" were named

A) after the three little bows worn by the emperor’s daughter

B) to honor the Italian conquest of Tripoli in Libya

C) for the bow ties fashionable at the time

D) by American restaurateurs

5. B) B) to honor the Italian conquest of Tripoli in Libya – And speaking of pasta names, in Italian, fettuccine = ribbons; stele = stars; stelline = little stars; capelli d'angelo = angel's hair; anelli = rings; fusilli = springs; ruote = wheels; conchiglie = shells; cavatappi = corkscrews; penne = quills; orecchiette = ears; lumache = snails; farfalle = bowties .  There are more than 600 pasta shapes produced worldwide.

     

6. Macaroni was introduced to the United States by

A) George Washington

B) Christopher Columbus

C) Antony Barillo

D) Thomas Jefferson

6. D) Thomas Jefferson - It seems that he fell in love with a certain dish he sampled in Naples while serving as the U.S. Ambassador to France. In fact, he promptly ordered crates of macaroni, along with a pasta-making machine, sent back to the States. It was not until 1848 that pasta was first produced commercially in the U.S., and not until the late 19th century that it became popular.

 

7. The first American pasta factory was opened in

A) Albany, New York

B) Brooklyn, New York

C) Chicago, Illinois

D) Detroit, Michigan

7. B) Brooklyn – in 1848, by a Frenchman named Antoine Zerega. Mr. Zerega managed the entire operation with just one horse in his basement to power the machinery. To dry his spaghetti, he placed strands of the pasta on the roof to dry in the sunshine.

 

8. One study shows that kids eat ______ pounds of pasta each year, more than any other age group.

A) 62

B) 37

C) 118

D) 98

8. A) 62 - Seventeen percent eat spaghetti while 16 percent eat macaroni and cheese.  The average American adult eats 20 pounds per year!  On an average, consumers enjoy pasta for dinner more than 40 times a year (approximately once a week). During the '80s, macaroni, which was traditionally considered a "blue-collar" down-home meal, was transformed into the more upscale "pasta." As more and more people began to have fun with it and romanticize it throughout the '60s and '70s, its image began to change along with its name.  While consumption of pasta has increased substantially since 1975 when Americans ate only 11.3 pounds, we have a long way to go to catch up with Italians who eat about 65 pounds of pasta per person in a year.

 

9. One billion pounds of pasta is about ______________ miles of 16-ounce packages of spaghetti stacked end-to-end.

A) 3,487

B) 72, 923

C) 212,595

D) 100,33

9. C) 212,595 – that’s enough to circle the earth's equator nearly nine times!  And to cook those one billion pounds of pasta, you would need 2,021,452,000 gallons of water - enough to fill nearly 75,000 Olympic-size swimming pools!

 

10. A noodle must contain 5.5% egg solids to be called a noodle, according to

A) federal law

B) the National Pasta Association

C) the American Dietetic Assocaition

D) pasta manufacturers world-wide

10. A) federal law - So without egg, a noodle really isn't a noodle.  While noodles contain egg, almost all other dry pasta shapes do not.

 

11. Pasta is a comfort food. In fact, eating it may have a calming effect. This is caused by:

A) Serotonin

B) Valine

C) Lysine

D) Tryptophan

11. A) Serotonin - Serotonin is a chemical produced naturally by the body that helps it relax. Our body's production of serotonin can be increased by eating complex carbohydrates, including pasta. Tryptophan, valine, and lysine are among the six essential amino acids found in pasta. Sprinkling cheese on pasta or serving it with beans are two good ways to complete its protein when you use it in meatless dishes.

 

12. Italians and Italian-Americans use various names for long-simmered tomato sauce. Which of these is not one of them?

A) Gravy

B) Sugo

C) Ragu

D) Marinara

12. D) Marinara - Marinara is a kind of tomato sauce originally made by sailors and fishermen who could cook up this light, meatless sauce quickly after a day at sea. Ragu, which became known as "gravy" to some Italian-Americans, and sugo, or "sauce," usually refer to rich sauces made with meat and simmered for hours.  Speaking of tomato sauce, pasta existed for thousands of years before anyone ever thought to put tomato sauce on it. The Spanish explorer Cortez brought tomatoes back to Europe from Mexico in 1519. Even then, almost 200 years passed before spaghetti with tomato sauce made its way into Italian kitchens.

 

13. Spaghetti and meatballs was invented in

A) Italy

B) America

C) China

D) Germany

13. B) America - The Italians only ate meat a few times a month. So, when they came to America, where meat was so plentiful, they incorporated meat into their cooking more often, making meatballs an American invention.


Pizza Facts

14. What percentage of Americans eat at least one pizza per month?

A) 35

B) 52

C) 83

D) 93

14. D) 93 –A study done by a U.S. Department of Agriculture statistician and home economist found that in a three-day survey period, 42% of children between the ages of 6 and 11 has eaten pizza.  Maybe that's why more than three billion pizzas are consumed in the U.S. each year, making Pizza a $32+ BILLION per year industry. According to a recent Gallop Poll, children between the ages of 3 and 11 prefer PIZZA over all other food groups for lunch and dinner.

 

15. Three of the top 10 weeks of pizza consumption occur in

A) September

B) January

C) December

D) July

15. B) January – More pizza is consumed during Super Bowl week than any other week of the year.

 

16. Among the over-50 market, pizza is the second most popular takeout food, after ___________________.

A) chicken

B) Chinese food

C) fish & chips

D) beer & pretzels

16. A) chicken

 

17. The most popular pizza crust is

A) deep dish

B) thick crust

C) regular thin crust

D) extra thin crust

17. C) regular thin crust – preferred by 61% of the population.  Thick crust and deep dish tied for second, at 14%. Only 11% of the population prefers extra thin.

 

18.  When did pizza first become popular in the United States?              

A) Just after WWI

B) Just after Ben Franklin's trip to Europe.

C) Just after WWII

D) During the Great Depression

18. A) Just after WWI – Soldiers returning home from World War I brought a taste for this Italian specialty with them.

119.  Pizza was originally...

A) a Chinese invention.

B) the food of peasants in Italy.

C) the food of Italian noblemen.

D) only made by monks.

19. B) the food of peasants in Italy – It’s like they always say, necessity is the mother of invention.

20.  How much pizza do Americans consume each day?

A) 2 football fields

B) 5,000 yards

C) 100 acres

D) 1,000,000 feet

20. C) 100 acres – Bet you wish you owned that much real estate! Imagine… 100 acres of pizza EACH DAY, or about 350 slices per second. Each man, woman and child in America eats and average of 46 slices, (23 pounds), of pizza per year.


21.  Pizza was first introduced to America by...

A) the Italian Tourism Board.

B) an Italian grocer

C) the World's Fair

D) Little Casear

21. B) an Italian grocer – Ginero Lombardi was the Italian grocer who first introduced pizza to America.  

 

22. Pizzerias represent what percentage of all restaurants?

A) 17 %

B) 6%

C) 25%

D) 43%

22. A) 17% – Pizza restaurant growth continues to outpace overall restaurant growth. There are approximately 61,269 pizzerias in the United States.  Pizza accounts for more that 10% of all foodservice sales.  By the way, according to the National Restaurant Associateion, Italian food ranks as the most popular ethnic food in America.

 

23. How many Americans’ order pizza for a casual evening with friends?

A) 1 out of 4

B) 2 out of 3

C) 3 out of 5

D) 4 out of 7

23. B) 2 out of 3

 

Favorite U.S. Pizza Toppings (top)

24. America’s favorite pizza topping is

A) Sausage

B) Ham

C) Cheese

D) Pepperoni

24. D) Pepperoni – 36% of all pizza orders request pepperoni.  We eat approximately 251,770,000 pounds of Pepperoni per year. Other popular pizza toppings are, mushrooms, extra cheese, sausage, green pepper and onions. The least favorite topping is anchovy!

 

25. Pizza makers have tried virtually every type of topping on pizza including:

A) peanut butter & jelly

B) bacon & eggs

C) mashed potatoes

D) all of the above

25. D) all of the above – Gourmet toppings are gaining ground in some areas of the country such as chicken, oysters, crayfish, dandelions, sprouts, eggplant, Cajun shrimp, artichoke hearts and tuna. More recent trends include game meats such as venison, duck and Canadian bacon.

 

26. Mozzarella cheese represents _________ of total cheese output in the U.S.

A) 63%

B) 30%

C) 75%

D) 57%

26. B) 30% – Production of Italian cheeses such as mozzarella, provolone, ricotta, parmesan and Romano by U.S. cheese makers more than doubled between 1980 and 1992, (from 688.6 MILLION pounds per year to nearly 2 BILLION pounds per year.

 

27. While 62% of Americans prefer meat toppings on their pizzas, _________ prefer vegetarian toppings

A) 5%

B) 17%

C) 25%

D) 38%

27. D) 38% - Women are twice as likely as men to order vegetarian toppings on their pizza.

 

Favorite World-Wide Pizza Toppings (top)

28. Pickled ginger, minced mutton and “paneer” (a form of cottage cheese, which looks quite like tofu) is a popular pizza topping in

A) Switzerland

B) Ireland

C) India

D) China

28. C) India – Tandoori chicken and chicken "tikka" are also increasingly popular toppings in India.

 

29. Squid and Mayo Jaga (mayonnaise, potato and bacon) are toppings popular in

A) Japan

B) Saudi Arabia

C) Denmark

D) Cuba

29. A) Japan - eel is also a favorite.  In Saudi Arabia, all meat toppings must be 100% beef as pork products are not consumed in the country.

 

30. Green peas are a common pizza topping in

A) Costa Rica

B) Brazil

C) Australia

D) Pakistan

30. B) Brazil – Costa Ricans favor coconut, while Australians enjoy shrimp and pineapple, as well as barbeque toppings on their pies.  Curry is a big seller in Pakistan.

 

31.  Where is pizza served covered with mockba, a combination of sardines, tuna, mackerel, salmon and onions?

A) Hawaii

B) Russia

C) Norway

D) Spain

31. B) Russia – red herring is also a topping of choice.

 

32.  What country boasts a popular combo with bacon, onion and fresh cream?

A) Scotland

B) Germany

C) France

D) Chile

32. C) France – the combo is called the Flambé

 

33. What is a favorite pizza recipe in the Netherlands?

A) “Double Dutch”

B) “Tulips for Two”

C) “The Dike”

D) “Klom-pie”

33. A) “Double Dutch” – the recipe calls for double cheese, double onions and double beef.

 

Pizza Superlatives (top)

34. Where was the world’s first pizzeria?

A) Naples, Italy

B) Rome, Italy

C) Athens, Greece

D) Crete

34. A) Naples, Italy – in 1830

 

35. Where was the first licensed pizzeria in the U.S.?

A) Boston

B) Chicago

C) Detroit

D) New York City

35. D) New York City-  in 1905

 

36. The largest pizza company in the world is ____________?

A) Little Caesar’s

B) Pizza Hut

C) Domino’s

D) Papa John’s

36. B) Pizza Hut – with 12,583 locations 

 

37. The world’s largest pizza had a diameter measuring

A) 85 feet

B) 50 feet

C) 140 feet

D) 25 feet

37. C) 140 feet - The world's largest pizza was built on October 11, 1987 by Lorenzo Amato and Louis Piancone. The pizza covered 10,000 square feet and measured 140 feet across. It weighed in at 44,457 pounds, consisting of, among other items, 18,174 pounds of flour, 1,103 pounds of water, 6,445 pounds of sauce, 9,375 pounds of cheese and 2,387 pounds of pepperoni. The pie was cut into 94,248 slices and eaten by more than 30,000 spectators at the baking in Havana, Florida.

 

38. In 1994, a world record for the longest chain of pizza was attempted in Guatemala by

A) Little Caesar’s

B) Pizza Hut

C) Domino’s

D) Papa John’s

38. C) Domino's – Dominio’s Pizza stores in Guatemala attempted a world record for the longest chain of pizza. The chain, reaching 500 meters, was donated to local charities.

                       

 

Answers

Here's the dish on pasta (top)

1. B) perfection and excellence - "Macaroni" became known as a fancy and overdressed ("dandy") style of Italian clothing widely imitated in England at the time. So by just sticking a feather in his cap and calling himself a "Macaroni", Yankee Doodle was proudly proclaiming himself to be a country bumpkin (an awkward and unsophisticated person), because that was how the English regarded most colonials at that time.  The word macaroni thus came to mean "dandy", or "fop", or "dude" at the time.

 

2. C) Miss Manners – a.k.a. Judith Martin

 

3. A) the Pope

 

4. C) paste - meaning a combination of flour and water - including the many forms of spaghetti, macaroni, and egg noodles. The term pasta has always been used on Italian restaurant menus to encompass all the various pasta offerings.

 

5. B) B) to honor the Italian conquest of Tripoli in Libya – And speaking of pasta names, in Italian, fettuccine = ribbons; stele = stars; stelline = little stars; capelli d'angelo = angel's hair; anelli = rings; fusilli = springs; ruote = wheels; conchiglie = shells; cavatappi = corkscrews; penne = quills; orecchiette = ears; lumache = snails; farfalle = bowties .  There are more than 600 pasta shapes produced worldwide.

     

6. D) Thomas Jefferson - It seems that he fell in love with a certain dish he sampled in Naples while serving as the U.S. Ambassador to France. In fact, he promptly ordered crates of macaroni, along with a pasta-making machine, sent back to the States. It was not until 1848 that pasta was first produced commercially in the U.S., and not until the late 19th century that it became popular.

 

7. B) Brooklyn – in 1848, by a Frenchman named Antoine Zerega. Mr. Zerega managed the entire operation with just one horse in his basement to power the machinery. To dry his spaghetti, he placed strands of the pasta on the roof to dry in the sunshine.

 

8. A) 62 - Seventeen percent eat spaghetti while 16 percent eat macaroni and cheese.  The average American adult eats 20 pounds per year!  On an average, consumers enjoy pasta for dinner more than 40 times a year (approximately once a week). During the '80s, macaroni, which was traditionally considered a "blue-collar" down-home meal, was transformed into the more upscale "pasta." As more and more people began to have fun with it and romanticize it throughout the '60s and '70s, its image began to change along with its name.  While consumption of pasta has increased substantially since 1975 when Americans ate only 11.3 pounds, we have a long way to go to catch up with Italians who eat about 65 pounds of pasta per person in a year.

 

9. C) 212,595 – that’s enough to circle the earth's equator nearly nine times!  And to cook those one billion pounds of pasta, you would need 2,021,452,000 gallons of water - enough to fill nearly 75,000 Olympic-size swimming pools!

 

10. A) federal law - So without egg, a noodle really isn't a noodle.  While noodles contain egg, almost all other dry pasta shapes do not.

 

11. A) Serotonin - Serotonin is a chemical produced naturally by the body that helps it relax. Our body's production of serotonin can be increased by eating complex carbohydrates, including pasta. Tryptophan, valine, and lysine are among the six essential amino acids found in pasta. Sprinkling cheese on pasta or serving it with beans are two good ways to complete its protein when you use it in meatless dishes.

 

12. D) Marinara - Marinara is a kind of tomato sauce originally made by sailors and fishermen who could cook up this light, meatless sauce quickly after a day at sea. Ragu, which became known as "gravy" to some Italian-Americans, and sugo, or "sauce," usually refer to rich sauces made with meat and simmered for hours.  Speaking of tomato sauce, pasta existed for thousands of years before anyone ever thought to put tomato sauce on it. The Spanish explorer Cortez brought tomatoes back to Europe from Mexico in 1519. Even then, almost 200 years passed before spaghetti with tomato sauce made its way into Italian kitchens.

 

13. B) America - The Italians only ate meat a few times a month. So, when they came to America, where meat was so plentiful, they incorporated meat into their cooking more often, making meatballs an American invention.


Pizza Facts (top)

14. D) 93 –A study done by a U.S. Department of Agriculture statistician and home economist found that in a three-day survey period, 42% of children between the ages of 6 and 11 has eaten pizza.  Maybe that's why more than three billion pizzas are consumed in the U.S. each year, making Pizza a $32+ BILLION per year industry. According to a recent Gallop Poll, children between the ages of 3 and 11 prefer PIZZA over all other food groups for lunch and dinner.

 

15. B) January – More pizza is consumed during Super Bowl week than any other week of the year.

 

16. A) chicken

 

17. C) regular thin crust – preferred by 61% of the population.  Thick crust and deep dish tied for second, at 14%. Only 11% of the population prefers extra thin.

 

18. A) Just after WWI – Soldiers returning home from World War I brought a taste for this Italian specialty with them.

19. B) the food of peasants in Italy – It’s like they always say, necessity is the mother of invention.

20. C) 100 acres – Bet you wish you owned that much real estate! Imagine… 100 acres of pizza EACH DAY, or about 350 slices per second. Each man, woman and child in America eats and average of 46 slices, (23 pounds), of pizza per year. 

 

21. B) an Italian grocer – Ginero Lombardi was the Italian grocer who first introduced pizza to America.  

 

22. A) 17% Pizza restaurant growth continues to outpace overall restaurant growth. There are approximately 61,269 pizzerias in the United States.  Pizza accounts for more that 10% of all foodservice sales.  By the way, according to the National Restaurant Associateion, Italian food ranks as the most popular ethnic food in America.

 

23. B) 2 out of 3

 

Favorite U.S. Pizza Toppings (top)

24. D) Pepperoni – 36% of all pizza orders request pepperoni.  We eat approximately 251,770,000 pounds of Pepperoni per year. Other popular pizza toppings are, mushrooms, extra cheese, sausage, green pepper and onions. The least favorite topping is anchovy!

 

25. D) all of the above – Gourmet toppings are gaining ground in some areas of the country such as chicken, oysters, crayfish, dandelions, sprouts, eggplant, Cajun shrimp, artichoke hearts and tuna. More recent trends include game meats such as venison, duck and Canadian bacon.

 

26. B) 30% – Production of Italian cheeses such as mozzarella, provolone, ricotta, parmesan and Romano by U.S. cheese makers more than doubled between 1980 and 1992, (from 688.6 MILLION pounds per year to nearly 2 BILLION pounds per year. 

 

27. D) 38% - Women are twice as likely as men to order vegetarian toppings on their pizza.

 

Favorite World-Wide Pizza Toppings (top)

28. C) IndiaTandoori chicken and chicken "tikka" are also increasingly popular toppings in India.

 

29. A) Japan - eel is also a favorite.  In Saudi Arabia, all meat toppings must be 100% beef as pork products are not consumed in the country.

 

30. B) Brazil – Costa Ricans favor coconut, while Australians enjoy shrimp and pineapple, as well as barbeque toppings on their pies.  Curry is a big seller in Pakistan.

 

31. B) Russia – red herring is also a topping of choice.

 

32. C) France – the combo is called the Flambé

 

33. A) “Double Dutch” – the recipe calls for double cheese, double onions and double beef.

 

Pizza Superlatives (top)

34. A) Naples, Italy – in 1830

 

35. D) New York City-  in 1905

 

36. B) Pizza Hut with 12,583 locations 

 

37. C) 140 feet - The world's largest pizza was built on October 11, 1987 by Lorenzo Amato and Louis Piancone. The pizza covered 10,000 square feet and measured 140 feet across. It weighed in at 44,457 pounds, consisting of, among other items, 18,174 pounds of flour, 1,103 pounds of water, 6,445 pounds of sauce, 9,375 pounds of cheese and 2,387 pounds of pepperoni. The pie was cut into 94,248 slices and eaten by more than 30,000 spectators at the baking in Havana, Florida.

 

38. C) Domino's – Dominio’s Pizza stores in Guatemala attempted a world record for the longest chain of pizza. The chain, reaching 500 meters, was donated to local charities.

 (top)

 

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