Author Topic: Why not cook sauce? Isn't it already cooked before being canned?  (Read 276 times)

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Offline NYYC

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I've read a lot of comments about not cooking sauce and using it fresh from the can. Isn't that a bit of an oxymoron? Aren't the tomatoes cooked before being canned? What would change cooking it after uncanning vs before canning. Wouldn't the temperature needed for preserving in the can exceed that of boiling on the stove?

Thanks in advance!

Offline The Dough Doctor

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Re: Why not cook sauce? Isn't it already cooked before being canned?
« Reply #1 on: July 22, 2016, 08:52:28 PM »
Actually, the best tomato products are made by what is called a "cold pack" process where the sauce is not cooked in the traditional method. The canned product is heated as a sterilizing step but that's all the heat they get. The biggest reason for not cooking the sauce is flavor. You know how great the sauce smells while it's being cooked? Too bad you're the only one who will experience those wonderful aromas, those aromas are volatile (that's why you were able to enjoy them) and they can never be enjoyed as part of the experience of eating the pizza. When we use a "cold" uncooked sauce those wonderful aromas are released during baking so many of those aromas can be enjoyed by those eating the pizza. From a pizzeria standpoint, once you cook the sauce you must cook it to at least 165F/73.8C and then hold it at 140F/60C for use (which further deteriorated the flavor of the sauce) so we cool it down for storage (food saftey regs stipulate that you must cool it down to 40F/4.4C or less but here's the sticker, it's called the 4-hour rule which states that the food can remain at a temperature which can support microbial growth (140F/60C to 40F/4.4C) for an accumulated time of not more than 4-hours. Add in the time it takes to get the sauce temperature up to 165F/73.8C and then back down to 40F/4.4C and you don't have much, if any time remaining on the clock, much less use it on the prep table.
If you want to experience a wonderful "sauce" just take a fully ripe tomato and slice it 3/16th. inch (about 4mm) thick, drain on an absorbent towel and use the slices just as they are to replace your regular sauce. I like to add sliced fresh garlic and torn fresh basil leaves under the tomato slices, then dress the pizza with cheese and desired toppings and bake as usual.
Tom Lehmann/The Dough Doctor

Online Pete-zza

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Re: Why not cook sauce? Isn't it already cooked before being canned?
« Reply #2 on: July 22, 2016, 09:00:33 PM »
NYYC,

I can't speak for all canned tomato producers but Stanislaus goes to great lengths to minimize the temperature at which their fresh-pack tomatoes are cooked before canning. You can see their philosophy on this matter by this excerpt:

It's a proven scientific fact that the longer a fresh tomato is cooked and or the higher the cooking temperature, the greater the flavor loss.

That's why at Stanislaus we constantly minimize cooking temperatures and can our tomatoes as fast as possible. That's why we continually invest in shaving a few more seconds off our already-quick heating times, and a few more degrees off our already-low temperatures. That's why we are driven to constantly surpass our principal flavor competitor—ourselves!

Since temperature is a key enemy of fresh tomato flavor, why do most tomato processors Re-Manufacture products, exposing them to 300-400% more time/temperature than the packed-from-fresh process?! Because it's cheaper, and because almost all their price-oriented competitors in America today are doing it!

What's the result? The absence of fresh flavor and a heavy over-cooked taste. (And in "fully prepared" products, an extra dose of spicing to cover-up the taste.) That's why Re-Manufactured tomato products sell for lower prices to food service operators more attuned to cost-per-case than the quality of the food they serve!


Source: http://www.stanislausfoodproducts.com/company/stanislaus-difference

You might also see this pictorial that shows the difference in processing at Stanislaus of its fresh-pack tomatoes in comparison with the re-manufactured tomatoes method:

http://www.stanislaus.com/products/not-from-concentrate/process_comparison

Peter

Offline Minolta Rokkor

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Re: Why not cook sauce? Isn't it already cooked before being canned?
« Reply #3 on: July 22, 2016, 09:18:58 PM »
NYYC,

I can't speak for all canned tomato producers but Stanislaus goes to great lengths to minimize the temperature at which their fresh-pack tomatoes are cooked before canning. You can see their philosophy on this matter by this excerpt:

It's a proven scientific fact that the longer a fresh tomato is cooked and or the higher the cooking temperature, the greater the flavor loss.

That's why at Stanislaus we constantly minimize cooking temperatures and can our tomatoes as fast as possible. That's why we continually invest in shaving a few more seconds off our already-quick heating times, and a few more degrees off our already-low temperatures. That's why we are driven to constantly surpass our principal flavor competitor—ourselves!

Since temperature is a key enemy of fresh tomato flavor, why do most tomato processors Re-Manufacture products, exposing them to 300-400% more time/temperature than the packed-from-fresh process?! Because it's cheaper, and because almost all their price-oriented competitors in America today are doing it!

What's the result? The absence of fresh flavor and a heavy over-cooked taste. (And in "fully prepared" products, an extra dose of spicing to cover-up the taste.) That's why Re-Manufactured tomato products sell for lower prices to food service operators more attuned to cost-per-case than the quality of the food they serve!


Source: http://www.stanislausfoodproducts.com/company/stanislaus-difference

You might also see this pictorial that shows the difference in processing at Stanislaus of its fresh-pack tomatoes in comparison with the re-manufactured tomatoes method:

http://www.stanislaus.com/products/not-from-concentrate/process_comparison

Peter
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Offline NYYC

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Re: Why not cook sauce? Isn't it already cooked before being canned?
« Reply #4 on: July 22, 2016, 09:53:17 PM »
Great information! Thank you.

It's an interesting opposite to some pasta sauces that are cooked for hours.

I have 3 tomato plants that have dodged the hail storms and it looks like I might get a decent crop. I'll try that thinly sliced fresh tomato trick when I harvest.

Offline mitchjg

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Re: Why not cook sauce? Isn't it already cooked before being canned?
« Reply #5 on: July 22, 2016, 10:01:49 PM »
I have a followup question.....

I recently tried a couple of rounds of oven roasting fresh tomatoes (which I understand can readily be done with canned tomatoes, too).  I sliced them, a little bit of S&P and thyme along with olive oil.  Roasted in the oven @ 300 for a couple of hours.

Notwithstanding the discussion about cooked sauce vs. uncooked sauce, these were very flavorful and much more so than just plain, uncooked tomatoes.  I believe it is because, despite any flavor loss into the air (the good smells), something chemically is happening and also the flavor is getting concentrated.

So, how do I reconcile these discussions?
Mitch

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Offline invertedisdead

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Re: Why not cook sauce? Isn't it already cooked before being canned?
« Reply #6 on: July 22, 2016, 10:19:25 PM »
I have a followup question.....

I recently tried a couple of rounds of oven roasting fresh tomatoes (which I understand can readily be done with canned tomatoes, too).  I sliced them, a little bit of S&P and thyme along with olive oil.  Roasted in the oven @ 300 for a couple of hours.

Notwithstanding the discussion about cooked sauce vs. uncooked sauce, these were very flavorful and much more so than just plain, uncooked tomatoes.  I believe it is because, despite any flavor loss into the air (the good smells), something chemically is happening and also the flavor is getting concentrated.

So, how do I reconcile these discussions?

Dehydration = concentration. Even the link Peter posted from Stanislaus is showing double concentration. The umami (glutamates) in tomatoes really bumps up as you reduce water.
Ryan

Offline The Dough Doctor

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Re: Why not cook sauce? Isn't it already cooked before being canned?
« Reply #7 on: July 22, 2016, 10:45:32 PM »
And as the tomato is cooked on the pizza it is also concentrated. They all end up being cooked in one way or another, most feel that you get a truer tomato flavor with minimal or at least a single cooking. Pasta sauce is a whole different story since the sauce doesn't really get cooked on the pasta, so slow simmering is the way to go for a pasta sauce. If you really want to see what too much heat on tomato sauce looks and tastes like just take a look at Hunts tomato paste. The cooking has turned it to a Burgundy red and the taste, well you can decide that for yourself.
Tom Lehmann/The Dough Doctor

Offline mitchjg

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Re: Why not cook sauce? Isn't it already cooked before being canned?
« Reply #8 on: July 22, 2016, 10:58:39 PM »
Thanks Tom.  Would you predict a bad result if I used already roasted tomatoes on a pie and then baked?
Mitch

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Offline The Dough Doctor

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Re: Why not cook sauce? Isn't it already cooked before being canned?
« Reply #9 on: July 23, 2016, 12:19:02 AM »
Not necessarily a "bad" result but a different result, if that result was good or bad you would have to decide based on your personal preferences and expectations. The one thing that I am sure could be predicted is that the fresh tomato flavor would be lost.
Tom Lehmann/The Dough Doctor

Offline norma427

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Re: Why not cook sauce? Isn't it already cooked before being canned?
« Reply #10 on: July 23, 2016, 07:53:32 AM »

Along somewhat of same lines of using roasted tomatoes as Mitch posted, Les's pizza sauce is very good.  Only part of the sauce is made with roasted tomatoes though. 

This is Les's Sebastopol Sweet Sauce.

http://www.pizzamaking.com/forum/index.php/topic,1931.msg17063.html#msg17063 

This was when I tried different roasted tomatoes with pizza sauces.

http://www.pizzamaking.com/forum/index.php/topic,11539.0.html
 
And another thread about Cooked vs Uncooked pizza sauce.

http://www.pizzamaking.com/forum/index.php?topic=3735.0 

Norma