Indian Pizza

Tandoor Chef Naan Pizza

Tandoor Chef Naan Pizza

I Paid: $3.49 per 8.3- to 9.1-ounce pizza (prices may vary by region)

Taste: 4 stars

Marketing: 4 stars

There’s no logical reason why pizza made with naan (North Indian flatbread) shouldn’t work out just fine—the bread is initially baked at high temperatures and has the combination of tenderness and resilience that’s key for making a functional, tasty pizza crust. Still, Tandoor Chef’s Naan Pizzas might make you pause when you see them in the frozen food aisle. American pizza by itself is a hell of a mash-up, being an American spin on an old-world food blended with the new-world tomato. Add South Asian ingredients, and the result is totally crazy-go-nuts.

Tandoor Chef Naan Pizza comes in four varieties; I tried Spinach & Paneer Cheese and Cilantro Pesto. The crust really worked. The degree to which naan approximates traditional pizza crust is striking: It’s got a good balance of crunch, chew, and doughy substance, without any of those attributes dominating the experience. Both varieties I tried were topped with mozzarella.

Cilantro Pesto had a bright herbal taste that complemented the milky flavor of the good, chewy cheese. The Spinach & Paneer version was equally pleasant, with fresh-tasting spinach, a light and herbal tomato sauce, and a pleasantly textural paneer that offered little flavor but a nice mouthfeel that complemented the gooier mozz.

These pizzas aren’t Italian American soul food, coasting on grease, cooked tomatoes, and salty meat, so they shouldn’t be used interchangeably with Tombstone or whatever other bachelor-worthy pizza you stock your freezer with. They’re lighter, more flavorful, more elegant, and a bit unconventional. Different, but good in their own right.

James Norton edits the Upper Midwestern food journal Heavy Table. He's also the coauthor of a book on Wisconsin's master cheesemakers. Follow CHOW on Twitter, and become a fan on Facebook.