If you like pizza you know that the sauce can make or break it.
I like a bright sauce, with a good garlic kick and enough oil to it to hold up after a quick, high temp bake. Pizza that gets it all right has the perfect balance of acidity, smooth creaminess from the right cheese for the pie and the heft of oil offset by a great crust. A GREAT pie has it ALL. That’s why I adore fresh sauces for fresh, homemade pizza… you get to control it. ALL OF IT. It’s probably why we cook more pizza at home than order out!
Making sauce from scratch is probably a given right now for a good many of you for a few reasons: we who garden are swimming in tomato harvests but even if you don’t garden it might be something to consider with half the world preparing to hunker down for winter and the whole world possibly hunkering down for another tough virus spike. Even if you have done the majority of your saucing, those late tomatoes still coming in, even if sparingly, can serve you well as pizza sauce. Heck, even if you see local produce becoming available at your grocery store or farmer’s market, sauce is a great idea to preserve the tastes of summer for those winter months. This recipe doesn’t need 20 pounds of tomatoes, friends!
While most traditional homesteaders will put up jar after jar of sauce in massive batches, I often prefer to keep it on the smaller side. At least when creating recipes, I find that being a bit more universal while considering people with limited space can be very helpful, and those with root cellars and massive pantry storage can just multiply the recipe out for their needs.
(Note: I HATE having to portion down recipes once I see the yield is too much for my needs. It drives me nuts to have to do division versus multiplication LOL I can’t be alone out there, right? It’s why most of my sauce recipe, unless stated in the title, are written for immediate use OR for those with limited storage space for their creations! Just an FYI!)
For those keeping track of our Top 5 Grows, from our tomato crop this year I chose to use 3 red/indigo shouldered varieties that were ripe for this recipe: ROMA, BLACK PLUM and MIDNIGHT SNACKER CHERRY.
INGREDIENTS (makes 1 pint sized jar of pizza sauce)
- 1 pound (roughly 4 cups) of red tomatoes of choice, deseeded and roughly chopped (skin on or peeled as this is for a sauce to be used within a 5-7days and refrigerated, not canned and made shelf stable.)
- 3 tbsp of olive oil
- 2-3 cloves of garlic, minced (I had massive bulbs so only used one huge one)
- 5-10 fresh basil leaves, sliced into ribbons
- 1/2 tsp dried or fresh oregano
- pinch of salt
- pinch of sugar (optional, I feel it makes it too sweet with the black plum and black Krim I use for this sauce)
- Add 2 tbsp oil to pan over medium heat, add garlic when oil is hot
- Sauté garlic for 1 minute until fragrant then add the tomatoes and oregano. Stir and let simmer for 15-30 minutes to reduce (if using a plum or roma style saucing tomato, this may only take 15 minutes to reduce to a thick sauce, other varieties could take longer as they hold more water within the flesh compared to a traditional saucing varietal.)
- Once sauce has reduced by half, add basil, pinch of salt and pinch of sugar (if using). Stir and simmer another minute.
- Remove from heat al allow to cool slightly.
- Place mixture into a pint sized Ball jar or small bowl and blend thoroughly with an immersion blender (you can also place mixture into a small food processor or blender) until smooth.
- Adjust with additional salt or herbs as desired and add in the last tbsp of olive oil.
- Stir and store in an airtight container in the fridge. Use within 1 week.
My new favorite way to handle tomatoes is to process as they become ripe into pint sized jars. They are just PERFECT sized for a single, small family amount of fresh sauce, and the immersion blender head fits inside perfectly with the wide mouth jars! It also gives you single serving sized portions of sauce ready to go in the pantry instead of opening a big jar and needing to take up fridge space until you use it all (or find it growing it’s own garden months later and it ends up in the trash.)
This will be used for a homemade, Neapolitan style salami, green olive and burrata pizza.
What is YOUR favorite kind of pizza? Drop it in the comments and let me know how you use this sauce!