Author Topic: Bones in pizza sauce  (Read 1956 times)

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Offline itsinthesauce

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Bones in pizza sauce
« on: December 16, 2004, 06:01:51 PM »
Here's an interesting recipe. I use neck bones in my spaghetti sauce, but never thought about using it in my pizza sauce.


This is the first time I use the San Marzano tomatoes so I was curious to see how much better the $3.29 can of tomatoes were from standard buck and a half tomatoes. I picked up a few cans of Cento brand San Marzano tomatoes at Shoprite as well asthe standard Italian plum tomatoes from the same brand. Once home I opened both cans to compare - the San Marzano's had better flavor, color and much more tender.

The San Marzano tomatoes are most likely vine ripened for maximum flavor and color which makes the standard (probably forced ripened) Italian tomatoes somewhat dull in comparison. The standard tomatoes seem unripe and too hard and require a much longer cooking time compared to the San Marzano tomatoes which break up very fast and cut cooking time. Even though the San Marzano’s are more than double the price I think they are worth the extra cost.

Every time I make sauce I wing it. I never measure or use a set recipe but once in a while after a batch I'll jot down what I use to pass on to others. Just remember recipes are guidelinea and not a perfect science so just go with the flow and use a little more or less when desired.




1 can San Marzano peeled tomatoes
1 can Italian plum tomato with basil
1 can crushed tomato
1 lb neck bones
1 onion
olive oil
salt to taste
1 or 2 bay leaves



Take the onion and chop it up and sauté in
olive oil until soft. Add cans of tomatoes and
cook for a bit breaking down the tomatoes
with a wooden spoon. Once all the tomatoes
are somewhat broken down add a can of the
crushed tomato, bay leaves and pork neck
bones (my mother uses country spare ribs)
and let simmer for an hour or two until flavors
blend and sauce thickens. I found the sauce
tasted fine and didn't use salt in this particuliar
batch. Good Luck!


Online Pete-zza

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Re:More Troubles for Pizza Inn
« Reply #1 on: December 16, 2004, 08:09:23 PM »
itsinthesauce,

I agree with you on the San Marzano tomatoes.  When I don't use the 6-in-1s, I usually use the San Marzanos.  But, when I do use the San Marzano tomatoes, I make a point to look for the designation D.O.P (Denominazione di Origine Protetta, or denomination of protected origin) on the labels.  This designation indicates that the San Marzano tomatoes are the genuine San Marzano "varietal" and are grown in a small region around Naples called Agro Sarnese-Nocerino.  The soil in this region is Vesuvial and the water used to grow the San Marzano tomatoes in this region is filtered through the Vesuvial deposits and is in large part responsible for the overall high quality and mild, low-acid flavor of the San Marzano varietal.  Because the Agro Sarnese-Nocerino region is so small and unable to produce enough of the genuine San Marzano tomatoes to meet demand, many local farmers and exporters try to pass off other tomatoes grown around Naples as the genuine article.  They do this by saying that their tomatoes are grown in "the San Marzano region" or in "the town of San Marzano", or that they are of the "San Marzano style".  Using these deceptive practices, they are able to charge higher prices than warranted.  

You can even buy San Marzano seeds of the varietal if you'd like and grow them anywhere you want.  But unless you have the same soil and weather conditions as exist around Naples, your tomatoes won't even remotely taste the same as those grown in the Agro Sarnese-Nocerino region.  One U.S. company sells canned San Marzano tomatoes grown from San Marzano seeds and the labels on the cans show San Marzano plum tomatoes all around the can with Italian words liberally interspersed.  Unless you look at the labels carefully, you may not realize that the tomatoes were grown in the U.S. (in this case, California).  I tried these tomatoes out of curiosity (I wanted to see how they compared with the real San Marzanos) and found them tough, light in color (almost green) and among the worst I have ever tried in my life.  But the price was close to $3.00 a can.

I don't want to leave you with the impression that San Marzano tomatoes that do not bear the D.O.P. designation are not good.  They are often quite good, and far better than most tomatoes grown in the U.S. and elsewhere.  They will often be grown around Naples using San Marzano seeds and, while they may not be quite as good as those with the D.O.P. certification, they will be fairly close (and a bit cheaper).  Some companies sell both D.O.P. and non-D.O.P versions of the San Marzano tomatoes, a good example of this being the LaValle brand, sold by LaValle Foods.  I have tried both and they are both good and fairly close in quality.  If the non-D.O.P. versions weren't available, then the prices of the D.O.P. versions would be much higher.  

The Cento (pronounced "Chento") tomatoes you have been using come with the D.O.P. certification.  My daughter-in-law in Scottsdale uses that brand, but only because they were the only ones she could find in her favorite upscale food store.  Here in the Dallas area where I live, it is almost impossible to find the San Marzano tomatoes (genuine or otherwise) even in the most upscale food markets.  Consequently, I have to buy them online and pay for high shipping costs.    

Peter

Offline Lars

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Re:Bones in pizza sauce
« Reply #2 on: December 17, 2004, 01:24:45 PM »
That's terrible news!  I just checked the can of San Marzano tomatoes I have, and it says ""grown domestically in the U.S.A.".    It also says "distributed by Simpson Imports, LTD., New Milford, NJ 07646".  

I also have a can of Rao's Homemade Italian Peeled Tomatoes, which says "Product of Italy", but it doesn't say where in Italy.  The recipe for sauce on the can uses 2 oz of fatback or salt pork, but I was unaware of using pork in sauce before.

I've been pretty happy with the Cento brand and Muir Glenn, both of which are very easy to find, but I'm making a point to order the 6-in-1 in the future, since the price is the same as what I've been buying.

The best tomatoes that I've grown here is Los Angeles are the Dona variety, and I actually grew them in a very large pot (to make it easier to keep weeds out).  I don't remember what kind of soil I used, but I know that it started out as potting soil but had had something else grown in it as well.  I often plant basil with the tomatoes, and my basil is still producing today although it does not grow very fast in December.

Offline itsinthesauce

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Re:Bones in pizza sauce
« Reply #3 on: December 17, 2004, 01:26:58 PM »
Living in Chicago, I'd kill for anything to grow in December.

Online Pete-zza

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Re:Bones in pizza sauce
« Reply #4 on: December 17, 2004, 03:12:55 PM »
Lars,

You bought the same brand of "domestic" San Marzano tomatoes as I did.  I hope yours are better than the ones I got.  

I also have a Rao tomato sauce, a puttanesca sauce.  As native New Yorkers know, Rao's is a famous New York City Italian restaurant that is almost impossible to get reservations for.  From what I can tell, it is reserved almost exclusively for regulars or guests of such regulars and by invitation only.  For those who can't get into the restaurant, they can buy the Rao line of (expensive) sauces that are sold by many specialty food stores around the country (and from Rao's website).  The jar of Rao sauce I have lists imported Italian tomatoes as the main ingredient for the sauce, but elsewhere on the label it says that the sauce is "made with imported Italian tomatoes from the San Marzano region."   I suspect they are not of the D.O.P. type, but rather other tomatoes grown around Naples.  

The use of meat-based ingredients in tomato sauces is quite common, most usually among Italians, who quite frequently refer to their tomato sauces as "gravy".  More often than not, the sauces are for use on pasta, as is the case with Rao's sauce using fatback or salt pork.  Wolfgang Puck's favorite tomato sauce (or so he says) uses chicken stock.  However, there is a well known pizzeria in Naples, called Porto Alba Pizzaria, that uses fatback or salt pork and beef stock for a tomato sauce for use on pizzas.  I will try to find the recipe and post it later today.  

If you are interested in a basic Rao marinara sauce, here is what is reputed to be Rao's actual recipe as used in his restaurant:

4 (28-oz.) cans imported Italian plum tomatoes with basil, preferably San Marzano tomatoes      
1/2 c. extra virgin olive oil
4 oz. fatback or salt pork, optional
6 T. minced onion
4 garlic cloves, peeled and minced
Salt, to taste
12 leaves fresh basil torn, optional
Pinch dried oregano
Pepper, to taste

Remove the tomatoes from the cans, reserving the juice in which they are packed.  Using your hands, crush the tomatoes, and gently remove and discard the hard core from the stem end and any skin or tough membrane.  Set aside.

Put the olive oil in a large, nonreactive saucepan over medium-low heat.  If using fatback, cut it into small pieces and add to the pan.  Sauté for about 5 minutes or until all the fat has been rendered.  Remove and discard the fatback.  Add the minced onion and sauté for 3 minutes or until translucent and just beginning to brown.  Stir in the garlic and sauté for 30 seconds or until just softened.  Stir in the tomatoes, the reserved juice, and salt.  Raise the heat, and bring the sauce to a boil. Immediately reduce the heat to a very low simmer and cook the sauce for about 1 hour or until the flavors have combined and the sauce is slightly thickened. If you prefer a thicker sauce, cook for an additional 15 minutes.  Stir in the basil, oregano, and pepper, and cook for an additional minute.  Remove from the heat and set aside or refrigerate until ready to use.

Peter


 
« Last Edit: December 17, 2004, 03:18:21 PM by Pete-zza »

Online Pete-zza

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Re:Bones in pizza sauce
« Reply #5 on: December 17, 2004, 03:17:36 PM »
And here is the Porto Alba tomato sauce for pizzas:

Porto Alba Tomato Sauce

2 oz. salt pork or fat back
1 onion, diced
2 cloves garlic, minced
16 oz. crushed plum tomatoes
4 oz. tomato puree
8 oz. (1 c.) beef stock
1 bay leaf
Pinch thyme
1/2 oz. salt

Place the salt pork in a large nonreactive saucepot and render the fat.  Add the onions and sauté until translucent.  Add the garlic and sauté until the aroma is apparent.  Add the crushed tomatoes, puree, and the beef stock to the pot and bring to a simmer.  Add the bay leaf, thyme, and salt and allow to simmer for 1 1/2 hours.  Remove the bay leaf, puree the sauce in a blender or food processor and adjust the seasonings.

Peter


 

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