Pizza – How to Make Sauce with Canned Tomatoes

    Published: 06-16-2009
    Views: 80,637
    Pizza expert Ruth Gresser demonstrates how to make sauce for your pizza with canned tomatoes.

    Ruth Gresser

    Owner and chef Ruth Gresser grew up cooking with her mother, who owned a catering business in Baltimore, Md. Ms. Gresser cooked her way through Grinnell College in Iowa before moving to San Francisco, where she cooked for several years at Friends a Cafe and at Le Trou Robert. In 1987, she graduated summa cum laude from Madeleine Kamman's Classical and Modern French Cooking School in Glen, NH. She then moved to Washington, DC, where she has helped open four popular restaurants: Pizzeria Paradiso Dupont Circle, Pizzeria Paradiso Georgetown, Blue Plate and Obelisk. Ms. Gresser has been the recipient of numerous awards and distinctions, including the Women's Chefs and Restaurateurs Madeleine Kamman Scholarship and a guest chef appearance at Alice Waters' renowned Chez Panisse in Berkeley, CA. She has also been profiled in The Washington Post Magazine, The Washington Business Journal and by Georgetown University Television. Ms. Gresser has been a chef demonstrator, contributor and panelist for The Smithsonian Institution and for FreshFarm Markets in Washington, DC. She is a member of Les Dames d'Escoffier and Women Chefs and Restaurateurs.

    Hi, I am Ruth Gresser from Pizzeria Paradiso, we're making pizza today. Right now I'm going to make for you a tomato sauce that's good any time of the year. I have several different kinds of canned tomatoes, because like in the winter time the tomatoes that you can buy fresh in the grocery store are not the most flavorful, whereas canned tomatoes are picked during the summer, when tomatoes are at their prime and they are canned, so you're going to get a better flavor, even though it's a canned tomato. So, what I would suggest to you is that you find tomatoes, find a canned tomato that you enjoy. You can open several different kinds of tomato, and they will taste very different from one to the other, so taste some tomatoes, find the tomato that you enjoy, and then you can mix, or just use a single kind of tomato to make this sauce for yourself. I have a couple of different kinds of tomato that I enjoy, and I mix them together to make the sauce for my pizza. So, these are just diced tomatoes that are packed in juice, as you can see here. So, the first thing to do is just strain out the juice so that you have -- you're left with these nice big chunks of tomato. This sauce is not a cooked sauce either, so it's very quick, very easy. The tomatoes will cook in the oven only. So, what you want to do is strain your tomatoes, and then just take the tomatoes that you have strained and put them in a bowl. Then you can take -- what I have here is a different kind of -- it's called a diced tomato, as you can see, it's a very different kind of dice from that tomato, but I think it's called a chopped tomato actually, and it's packed in a thicker, thicker juice. So, I mix a little of this in with my diced tomato. I like to use my fingers. If you don't like to use your fingers, you can use a spatula or a spoon and just mix these together. Now, I might put a little bit more of those chopped tomatoes, and now I have a little bit of mixture of large chopped tomatoes, and sort of a more crushed tomato. I am going to add a little parsley, and a little salt. Make sure you salt nicely, because tomatoes can tend to be acidic, so you want appropriate amount of salt. So, you will taste the tomatoes and see, so you will salt it to taste. Then I have got a little bit of chiffonade of basil, so I'm going to mix all of that in there. I am going to also add some black pepper, and just a touch of olive oil. So, here you have a nice herb tomato sauce to top your pizza. The next thing we're going to do is shape the pizza dough for the second rise.