Author Topic: Question for Bubba  (Read 3946 times)

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Offline bortz

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Question for Bubba
« on: February 25, 2005, 08:36:03 PM »
Hey Bubba- Glad to hear you're kicking the smoking thing and that you're lightening up a little.  Since you're asking if we have questions, yes I've got one.  It's regarding sauce.  I've noticed a few shops around town make a sauce that almost has a sweet taste to it, yet it's not overly sweet.  I've tried sugar in the sauce but either you don't taste it at all if you don't use much of it or if you add a couple teaspoons, it gets too sweet and overpowers it. There's been no happy medium when it comes to sugar addition.
As an alternative, I've been using baking powder to kill the acidity.  What do the pro's do to get this semi-sweet taste?    ???


Offline Bubba Kuhn

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Re: Question for Bubba
« Reply #1 on: February 27, 2005, 04:10:52 PM »
The sauce for a great pie is often overlooked and the moister it can produce, ...or not, .... is one of the keys to control for COOKING a great crust.

What you are most likely running across is a commercially available base that you can not replicate with the usually available run of goods such as, canned tomatoes, diced, puree, pastes or sauces that exist from the average store shelf. It is seldom used exclusively, but is often used by many to "fill in the spaces" your own choice of tomato blends, herb mix, oil etc. What this stuff is, is basically a Twice cooked tomato sauce with the solid content of a "puree" generally with an olive oil and fresh basil incorporated in the canning process.  Yes it has a unique sweetness. This is not any corn syrup or sugar additive. This is naturally occurring tomato "sugar" .Commercial reduction in a vacuum process is low temp. The tomato remains cool and never "bitters" in the reduction process before it is canned. Please remember the water to solids ratios of a sauce determine often if a crust will cook or not regardless of if the dough is right or not.
Sugar is generally used in pizza sauce to control the acid. This can be done just as well with fresh herb in your sauce recipe. Used to control the heartburn compaints some people experience from imbalanced pizza sauces. Not necessarily to flavor it as I suspect you found out The easiest thing for me to do is ask you to post or send me a copy of your sauce recipe and It may clue me in how you can gat a complex sweetness with out adding any thing but balancing sugar.
The is a way to make your own. 
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Offline bortz

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Re: Question for Bubba
« Reply #2 on: February 27, 2005, 06:23:46 PM »
Hi Bubba, Thanks for the answer.  So it's a commercially available sauce product then most likely. I have a pizza wholesaler that supplies many of the area shops and they do a cash and carry business to the general public.  If you can tell me brand names and the exact product name to look for, then I'll be in business. 

The sauce from the pizza shop I'm trying to reverse engineer has an almost paste consistency.  The shop owner wouldn't tell me how to duplicate it or where he gets it from but he was kind enough to put a small dollop of the sauce in the corner of my pizza box and I took it home and tried to analyze it :)  All I could tell was it's very light on spices.  It doesn't even look like there are pizza spices in it. No tell-tale oregano flakes or basil, no garlic flavor- nothing.  That's what's so frustrating about it.  >:(

Here's a sauce I'm using in the interim until I can formulate a better one:

6 oz. can of paste
1 1/2 6 oz. cans of water using empty can from above
1 tsp. parsley chopped
2 tsp. olive oil (1 tsp. if you use oil to dress dough)
1 tsp KA pizza seasoning
1/2 tsp. bad byron's butt rub
1 1/2 tbsp. white cooking wine
1 tsp. butter
1 1/2 tsp. parm grated cheese
1/2 tsp. baking powder to kill acidity
1/2 tsp. basil

Thanks for the help!!

Offline Steve

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Re: Question for Bubba
« Reply #3 on: February 27, 2005, 06:28:53 PM »
Stanislaus and Escalon tomato products have a naturally sweet taste to them. They both use a "fresh pack" process which ensures that very little heat is used during processing and canning.
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Offline Timreid

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Re: Question for Bubba
« Reply #4 on: February 27, 2005, 09:55:28 PM »
For anybody who might watch the foodnetwork channel, sweetness is a product of the kind of tomatoes used.  Ask Emeril or Mario Vitale.

Just my two cents...

Timbo

Offline Bubba Kuhn

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Re: Question for Bubba
« Reply #5 on: February 27, 2005, 10:58:48 PM »
The remark about what tomato is used as the base for the commercially made sauce is so right. The most common tomato used is actually the HINZE 4857 genetically altered tomato. It is like a cross between a plum and the old beefsteak slicer. As is most things that are trying to be the best to two worlds. In this case pick ability by machine and fiber content with the lease water retention. Neither is a very good solution by its self. But there you have it fast growing, sweet enough, arid in its water. Small in its stem cap, and easily give up the vine for harvest by hand or by row pickers.
If you have access to the basic wholesale food service inventory (sysco, first street, se rycoff, etc.). Look for any of the heavy duty pizza sauces that are commercially produced. Look at the ingredient list for a nice simple one made from tomato, basil and ascorbic acid (vitamin C). I then use some diced, some puree and the heavy duty pizza sauce blended together with oil herbs and spices to make my sauce.
From the sample they put in your box it sound like they are using it straight from the can. I personally think this is a culinary no no as any one can serve that flavor profile as it comes from a can.
Your recipe changed ALA Bubba
6 oz. can of paste
1 1/2 6 oz. cans of water using empty can from above
Not paste! Paste is for long cooking sauces not ALA minute process like pizza. This is why your having a bad acid trip. This is where you want the 6 oz of heavy duty pizza sauce instead.
Donít have is substitute a plain canned tomato sauce and drain the diced tomato
6 ounces puree
6 ounces diced tomato in their juice
This is fine
1 tsp. parsley chopped
3 tsp. olive oil (no matter what)

What the hell is this?
1 tsp KA pizza seasoning
1/2 tsp. bad byron's butt rub
Never heard of them so I cannot speak to it.

As a rule try never to use spice blends. Use the primary spices and have control over your recipes and out come.
Wine is better in a glass in this case. Put it there and enjoy it.
1 1/2 tbsp. white cooking wine but not in the sauce
Olive oil is adjusted to drop the 1 tsp. butter
Best if sprinkled on top of a pizza not lost in the sauce.
1 1/2 tsp. parm grated cheese
No need to kill the acid as we are not using an acid paste to start with.
1/2 tsp. baking powder to kill acidity
1/2 tsp. oragano
1/2 tsp. basil
5 clovers fresh chopped garlic
Salt and Pepper to taste.
For tradition sake please include a few flakes of crushed red peppers
This is kinda what I am using here at the shop. See how it works for you.
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Offline duckjob

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Re: Question for Bubba
« Reply #6 on: February 28, 2005, 01:42:50 AM »
Interesting, I'll have to try substituting tomato sauce for paste. I agree about the spice mixes in sauce, sometimes it can be a bit much. I usually include a teaspon each of oregano, basil and crushed red pepper and a clove or two of garlic. Thanks for the input Bubba.

Offline Steve

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Re: Question for Bubba
« Reply #7 on: February 28, 2005, 07:51:21 AM »
I agree with Bubba on the use of seasoning blends.

While it's nice to grab a bottle and sprinkle it into your sauce, you have no control of what you're putting in. And, should the store be out of that particular blend or if the manufacturer changes the blend, well, you get the picture. That's why I always use unsalted butter. I can control the amount of salt that way (not for pizza making, but as an example.)

Try making your own blend and that way you can tweak it and it will truly be YOUR creation.  ;)
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Offline bortz

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Re: Question for Bubba
« Reply #8 on: February 28, 2005, 09:16:34 AM »
Thanks for the input guys.  Okay Bubba, I  understand where you're coming from now.  So, this would be a good modified starter recipe?:

6 oz. can of commercial pizza sauce if available- if not,  6 oz. puree + 6 oz. diced tomato with it's own juice
1 tsp. parsley
3 tsp. olive oil
1/2 tsp. oregano
1/2 tsp. basil
5 cloves fresh chopped garlic
crushed red pepper flakes, salt, pepper to taste

Is that about the gist of it?

Thanks for the help to get this straightened out.
 

Offline Steve

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Re: Question for Bubba
« Reply #9 on: February 28, 2005, 09:24:18 AM »
Bortz, if you can find a can of Escalon's Bonta pizza sauce, you'll never use "grocery store" tomatoes again. Bonta is thick, like paste, but it's naturally sweet. If you can't find the Escalon product, you might try to find the Stanislaus equivalent: Saporito Pizza Sauce.
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Offline Trinity

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Re: Question for Bubba
« Reply #10 on: March 01, 2005, 07:48:11 AM »
Thanks for the input guys.† Okay Bubba, I† understand where you're coming from now.† So, this would be a good modified starter recipe?:

6 oz. can of commercial pizza sauce if available- if not,† 6 oz. puree + 6 oz. diced tomato with it's own juice
1 tsp. parsley
3 tsp. olive oil
1/2 tsp. oregano
1/2 tsp. basil
5 cloves fresh chopped garlic
crushed red pepper flakes, salt, pepper to taste

Is that about the gist of it?

Thanks for the help to get this straightened out.
 


 ::)allmost like my recipe....Hmmm

My latest pizza sauce recipe: 

1 12 oz can Hunts tomato puree,

2 teaspoons granulated sugar,

2 tablespoons evoo,

2 tablespoons grated parm/romo cheese  (kraft),

1 pinch dried oregeno

2 pinch's basil leaf

dash garlic salt, and a dash of black pepper.
It's an Earth food. They are called Swedish meatballs. It's a strange thing, but every sentient race has its own version of these Swedish meatballs! I suspect it's one of those great universal mysteries which will either never be explained, or which would drive you mad if you ever learned the truth.

Offline Timreid

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Re: Question for Bubba
« Reply #11 on: March 01, 2005, 12:40:43 PM »
I don't know if you guys watch food network, I watch it often (why not learn from the pros?). 

Good Eats is a show which explains how and why many foods came to be eaten, as well as having good recipes.  Recently they had a show featuring tomatoes and explaining the difference between vine ripe and store ripe, and sweet and not so sweet.  The host, Alton Brown, demonstrated what looked like a very good tomato sauce recipe from scratch using roma tomatoes and baking them in the oven.  I haven't tried it yet but I plan to.  You guys should check it out.

Timbo

Offline Bubba Kuhn

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Re: Question for Bubba
« Reply #12 on: March 17, 2005, 02:22:42 AM »
Thanks for the input guys.† Okay Bubba, I† understand where you're coming from now.† So, this would be a good modified starter recipe?:

6 oz. can of commercial pizza sauce if available- if not,† 6 oz. puree + 6 oz. diced tomato with it's own juice
1 tsp. parsley
3 tsp. olive oil
1/2 tsp. oregano
1/2 tsp. basil
5 cloves fresh chopped garlic
crushed red pepper flakes, salt, pepper to taste

Is that about the gist of it?

Thanks for the help to get this straightened out.
 

First sorry for the long time in responding. Very hectic around here lately.
I meant to say is with the heavy pizza sauce use the juice in the diced tomato if puree is used drop the juice way down or the sauce will be to thin. This will mess with the doughs cooking time.

The oven roasted trick for sweetening your plums (Roma tomatoes) works with most any veg. caramelizing will bring out the natural sugars.

 I think I now have the board set to send me a notice now. I should be better in getting back here now.
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Offline bortz

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Re: Question for Bubba
« Reply #13 on: March 17, 2005, 07:05:59 AM »
Thanks for the tips Bubba.  I bought some Stanislaus full red pizza sauce which just has basil in it so I can experiment until I get a good recipe,  just using that and Penzy's spices.  I also picked up a 25# bag of high gluten red spring wheat flour. Now I have to find a source of grande cheese that's not as expensive as my current source.  Since I have the quality ingredients and because of  the guidance of the kind and gracious people on this board, I should be a lot closer to a pro type pizza.
Thanks again   :)

Offline Bubba Kuhn

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Re: Question for Bubba
« Reply #14 on: March 17, 2005, 11:09:58 AM »
You are welcome.
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Offline scott r

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Re: Question for Bubba
« Reply #15 on: March 17, 2005, 01:16:59 PM »
I have a tip for getting a sweeter sauce without sugar.  Use carrot in the sauce instead of sugar.  I know it sounds crazy, but you should try it.  I would recommend taking 1/3 of your sauce, and cook it with a decent amount of coarsely chopped, or even whole carrots.  Cook it low and slow for about an hour, or until the carrots are soft.  Then remove the carrots, and mix the cooked sauce with the rest of your uncooked sauce.  Then you have the best of both worlds.  The fresh uncooked sauce flavor, and a natural sugar provided by the carrots.  Again, you do not leave the carrots in the sauce.  Somehow it makes your sauce sweet without a carrot flavor.

Also, I totally agree with the Stanislaus/Escalon recommendation.  I have tried at least 30 kinds of tomatoes, including San Marzano's, and nothing beats them.  Their sauce comes nice and thick, so you don't have to cook it down like you would with the brands you find in the grocery store.  If you have to buy store brands, stick with the Huntz and Pastene.

Grande is creamy, melts great, and doesn't easily burn, but the flavor is just not that great.  Can you find whole milk mozzarella from Sorrento, or Great Lakes? One of my favorites was Axlerod, but it has been discontinued.  The parent company also sells Maggio, and I think it might be the same thing as the old Axlerod.  Great lakes has the best flavor of all, but it is a little more oily than Grande. It almost like it has butter in it. Also, there is a new style of mozzarella that is becoming available around the country, and most of it tastes better than Grande to me and my tasting crew.  The foodservice industry calls it cryo-pak.  It is a pre salted fresh mozzarella packed in a vacuum sealed plastic.  Bel Gioioso, is the best, but Grande, Poly-O, and others are showing up in grocery stores around my area.  Sometimes it is called fresh mozzarella, sometimes Fior Di Latte. You know when you see it because it is pure white like fresh mozzarella (the kind in water), and the plastic around it is a tight form fitting type without a lip,or rim.  I think someone on this forum has actually found the Poly-O cryo pak at sams club for $2.50 a pound. 

Offline Pete-zza

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Re: Question for Bubba
« Reply #16 on: March 17, 2005, 02:00:14 PM »
Scott,

One of our members, Randy, suggested the carrot idea some time ago (see http://www.pizzamaking.com/forum/index.php/topic,645.msg5863.html#msg5863). I had meant to try it but since most of my pizza sauces are raw tomatoes out of the can, I didn't get around to doing it. However, I knew from personal experience in making fresh carrot juice that it has a trememdous amount of natural sugar in it. It even occurred to me that it might be possible to use some of the carrot juice in a tomato sauce to sweeten it.

In the Dallas area we are somewhat deprived of the best pizza ingredients. So I am always on the lookout for items that I might be able to use to make better pizzas. One of the items I found was one you mentioned, the Bel Gioioso mozzarella cheese. I tried it but it seemed to melt too quickly and decomposed into a ricotta-like state of affairs. Fortunately, one of the best fresh mozzarella cheeses in the Dallas area is from the Mozzarella Company, just outside of downtown Dallas. Even with that cheese I have to work to keep it from decomposing too quickly, like using it stone cold, or in thick slices, covering the sauce with it, or adding it to a pizza midway through baking.

Of the San Marzanos, have you found any particular brand that you like over the others?

Peter
« Last Edit: March 17, 2005, 02:02:28 PM by Pete-zza »

Offline jimd

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Re: Question for Bubba
« Reply #17 on: March 17, 2005, 02:26:43 PM »
Regarding adding carrots to the sauce to sweeten it, I was given a recipe a few years ago by an old italian grandmother (really) that includes taking a small carrot and dicing it into the sauce as it cooks down. When the carrot becomes soft. the sauce is put through a hand cranked macerator that turns the carrot into a baby food consistency. The carrot "puree" remains in the sauce and, to my taste, adds both sweetness and offsets some of the acidity of the sauce. This sauce has become my signature marinara sauce for pasta and gets great reviews, even from Grandma!

Offline scott r

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Re: Question for Bubba
« Reply #18 on: March 17, 2005, 08:53:06 PM »
peter,

I too, have found that my favorite mozzarella is made locally at a small cheese shop.  I am surprised you weren't into the Bel Gioioso, though.  Was it the "fresh" mozzarella that is not in water?  Personally, I usually end up using a combination of the fresh (not in water), and normal dry mozzarella, plus a provolone.  Maybe that is why I haven't encountered any problems.

As far as San Marzano's go, I like Pastene.  They are fairly cheap for a SM, taste great, and I can actually get them in my local grocery store.  I am pretty sure they are DOC certified.  Pastene also has a great chunky tomato called "kitchen ready".  You guys nalied it with the 6in1 Escalon, though.  It's tough to beat them, but I know they are not appropriate for the authentic pizzas.  I would avoid spending the big bucks for La Bella San Marzanos.   I got stuck with two expensive cases of them, and both types I ended up with taste like aluminum to me.

Offline Pete-zza

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Re: Question for Bubba
« Reply #19 on: March 17, 2005, 10:14:42 PM »
Scott,

The Bel Gioioso mozzarella is the right one. Maybe I didn't give it enough of a chance or I should try using it with the other cheeses to keep it from breaking down too much.

Your Pastene tomatoes are mostly regional to your area. I see them a lot when I am visiting in MA but haven't tried them. Pastene has both the DOP and non-DOPs. And they are reasonably priced compared with the others. Most recently I have been using the LaRegina DOPs with the green label. I first tried a few from the Salumeria in the North End (I ordered online) and liked them a lot. I subsequenty bought more from a place in Providence. Not long thereafter I read an article that one of the chefs at Al Forno in Providence tested over 20 brands of San Marzanos and concluded that the LaReginas were the best.†But they aren't cheap, especially if you have to tack on shipping charges.

You may also be able to get the Famoso San Marzanos DOP which are also distributed in your area. I have also been using them recently and am satisfied. They aren't quite as good as the LaReginas but they are quite a bit cheaper. They were also highly rated in another taste test I read about.

Peter


 

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