(I still haven't picked up a can from Lou's, but next time I am in the vicinity of one, I will pick up a can or two and compare them to my favorite white label 'san marzano' brand tomatoes.)
OK, I finally picked up a few cans of Lou Malnati's tomatoes when I was out in the burbs a few weeks ago.
I made a test pizza and here's my first observations:
I opened the can, which says 'random cut tomatoes' on it, and they sure ain't lyin'!
Some of the tomatoes in the can were nearly whole, and the rest was a combo of crushed, diced and heavy puree.
I did a little mashing with a fork in the can to break down the larger pieces, and then added the whole can to a 12" deep dish pie.
(p.s. - SaCo cultured buttermilk powder is an interesting addition to a dough recipe).
The taste right out of the can was close to what i recall from the last time I was at a Lou Malnati's for pizza, but not as sweet,
but the surprising thing is... those 'san marzano' brand white label diced and crushed tomatoes actually taste better to me!
So, while I'm sure glad to have the Lou's tomatoes on hand (and they were a steal at about $3 a can after tax),
I think I'm going to stick with my 'San Marzano' for future pizzas.