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Pizza Sauce Recipe – Incredibly Fresh Tasting

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What a breakthrough! Let me tell you about it. I put together a recipe for a pizza sauce some time ago based upon various recipes I had researched on the internet. It tasted really decent. It involved cooking down some tomato sauce with some spices and a wee bit of brown sugar added. As I was saying, it tasted really decent. However, I get pizza delivered once in awhile from a local pizzeria that does New York Style Pizza and I am always amazed at how light and fresh the sauce tastes. I began to ponder on this and wondered just what it is that I was missing in my recipe.

Since pizzerias are usually pretty secretive about their recipes I decided not to bother trying to find out what they did to get their pizza to taste so good. Instead I went online and surfed for more sauce recipes. Then I stumbled upon a site by Jeff Varasano, who “reverse-engineered” the pizza of Patsy’s Pizza in East Harlem, New York. Reverse engineering is, instead of engineering a product, taking an existing product and breaking it down to find out how it is made so you can replicate it.

Jeff, the founder and CEO of a software company, loved the product from Patsy’s so much that he committed himself to finding out how he could produce a pizza with the same qualities. After six years of research and experimentation, Jeff not only reached his goal, but he has generously shared the details of his work and many tips for putting together an excellent pizza. You can read all about it at: slice.seriouseats.com/jvpizza/

But getting back to the sauce. Jeff said something about pizza sauce that got my attention. He said, “DON’T make a sauce. That is, don’t pre-cook the tomatoes. The tomatoes will cook on the pizza. If you cook a sauce first, it will cook again on the pizza, turning it brown and yucky. No need to make a sauce. Look at how overcooked many sauces are. The best places don’t do this.” Jeff also said something about the canned tomatoes he uses: “Always buy whole, peeled tomatoes and crush them yourself.”

I thought long and hard about this and figured that Jeff probably knew what he was talking about! It all seemed to make sense. Now I definitely don’t do everything the way Jeff does, but I have implemented his strategy of crushing whole, peeled tomatoes and, without pre-cooking them, applying them directly on the pizza before before putting it in the oven. The results have been phenomenal! I have discovered what my pizza sauce was missing and how to make my sauce taste as fresh and light as the wonderful New York style pizza that I get delivered. Here is my recipe:


1 14.5 oz. can whole, peeled tomatoes (I like Hunt’s®.)

2 cloves garlic

1/2 tsp. dried oregano leaves

1/2 tsp. dried basil leaves

1/4 tsp. salt

1/4 tsp. Lawry’s® seasoned pepper (or ground black pepper)

1/4 tsp. brown sugar

1/4 tsp. onion powder

1/8 tsp. McCormick® crushed red pepper


Mince the garlic. In a bowl, blend the garlic, the tomatoes and all other ingredients and crush the tomatoes by hand. Or, mince the garlic in a food processor and add the tomatoes and all other ingredients and process until tomatoes are crushed (but not pureed). Spread evenly on pizza dough and add your cheese, pepperoni, etc. This will make enough sauce for two 12″ pizzas.

Copyright © 2007 Lee Griffith. All rights reserved.

Source by Lee Griffith

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