July 12, 2016

Don't try this at home (Homemade fresh tomato pizza sauce)

Y'all know I love making my own pizza dough and pizza.  I have failed, have had success and had in between.  I decided to take my pizza making skills to the family beach trip and see if I could succeed in a borrowed kitchen.  I, of course, would have to pre-make the dough.  Dough for 7 adults and 4 kids on the fly is not for vacation!

I went to my grandparents' house for father's day and my grandmother gave me a bunch of cherry tomatoes and basil from her garden.  I decided to make the pizza sauce for my pizza experiment from scratch too!  I roasted the tomatoes because I thought that would give it good flavor and make the cherry tomatoes easy to peel.  I was right, but not all of them split so it was still hard.  Unless you are an overachiever in the kitchen like me,  I suggest you use canned tomatoes.  But seriously, make this, it's not hard, has no preservatives and will make your homemade pizza taste like a star!

The short order pizza making got a bit hectic and I did not photograph it all accurately, but it was so good!  My picky mom liked it and my dad was super impressed with my skills!  I made a bunch of combos, pepperoni, red bell peppers and roasted garlic; ham, basil and cherry tomatoes; hawaiian; meats and garlic; and of course just cheese for the kiddos!

The truest sense of organic, from your grandma's garden!
Saute up some garlic and onions.  This should be a familiar sight!
Chop up that basil.  Roll it all up, slice and then chop.  #themoreyouknow
Add your peeled tomatoes.  This took awhile.  I should have roasted longer. I will guide you well in the instructions portion of this post.
Let it cook on down while you get engrossed in an episode of Chopped.
This probably happened on Chopped too! That's why I forgot about my sauce!
Salvage what you can and throw it in your food processor.

Can't even tell!  Looking good!
This is a very big mason jar.  It went in my freezer.
And then pizza happened.  My family was gobbling it up so much I couldn't get anyone to take a proper picture! It was really good!


Homemade semi whole wheat pizza dough: (makes two medium sized pizzas)

1 and 2/3 cup all purpose flour
1/3 cup whole wheat flour
1 packet active dry yeast (I used Hodgson Mill)
1/2 tsp sugar
1/2 tsp salt
1 cup hot water divided
olive oil
cornmeal for dusting

This version uses a stand mixer. I based it off this Food Network recipe that did not use one.

Place flours, yeast sugar and salt in stand mixer with dough hook attachment. Mix on low for 2 minutes. While it is running, add 2/3 cup hot wateMix for a minute, then add 2 tablespoons olive oil
When it gets crumbly, add remaining 1/3 cup hot water and scrape down the sides. Add more oil if it looks dry.  Keep mixer running until dough forms a ball. After five minutes of that, stop mixer. 
Place dough in an oiled boil and cover with plastic wrap. Let rise in a dark warm place (I put it in the pantry) for a half hour.  Preheat oven to 475 and place a pizza stone or two in the oven. After a half hour of rising, divide into two equal portions and flatten each out on a cornmeal dusted board to roll out into a pizza. Place crust onto preheated pizza stone topped with parchment paper. Place desired toppings on crust and bake for 7-10 minutes or until desired doneness.


Homemade Pizza Sauce: (Adapted from Eating Well)

Ingredients
5 pounds cored whole tomatoes, fresh, frozen or canned* see note
3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
2 medium onions, chopped
4 cloves garlic, minced
3/4 teaspoon dried basil or 1 tablespoon chopped fresh
3/4 teaspoon dried thyme or 1 tablespoon chopped fresh
3/4 teaspoon dried oregano or 1 tablespoon chopped fresh
1 3/4 teaspoons salt
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground pepper
2 tablespoons tomato paste

If using fresh tomatoes, bring a large pot of water to a boil. Make a small X in the bottom of each tomato and plunge into the boiling water until the skins are slightly loosened, 30 seconds to 2 minutes. Transfer to a bowl of ice water for 1 minute. Peel with a paring knife, starting at the X. If using frozen tomatoes, run each under warm water and peel or rub the skin off. Thaw in the refrigerator or defrost in the microwave until mostly thawed. Chop the tomatoes, reserving any juice.Heat oil in a Dutch oven over medium heat. Add onions and cook, stirring, until beginning to brown, about 4 to 6 minutes. Add garlic and cook, stirring, for 1 minute. Add the tomatoes (and any juice), basil, thyme, oregano, salt, pepper and sugar (if using). Bring to a boil. Reduce heat to maintain a simmer and cook until thickened to the consistency of pizza sauce, about 2 hours. Taste and season with additional salt and pepper.  Transfer the sauce to a blender, add tomato paste and blend until smooth. (Use caution when pureeing hot liquids.)

*Note I used cherry tomatoes.  I just tossed them in Olive Oil and roasted them at 400 for 10 minutes.  You should do that for 20 minutes,  then cool them for 20 minutes. Or just use canned!


Happy Cooking!  
Missy

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