The best bakers I've known are on the website "thefreshloaf.com".
I love being a part of the forum. There are hundreds and hundreds of wonderful bakers from all over the world there at your fingertips to give you ideas, share techniques and to cheer you on.
I submitted a request for help on how to make a wonderful pizza sauce and within minutes several came to my rescue.
The base for this sauce recipe was provided to me by "The Song Of The Baker" is his screen name, and further inspired by "macZiggy", "foodslut" (no, that's not a typo) and "clazar123", who all made suggestions like adding cinnamon, worsteshire sauce and information on how to use fresh roma tomatoes. Thanks guys! This is the best sauce I've yet to try!
Makes enough sauce for 2 medium size pizzas.
- 1-2 large cloves garlic grated (to taste)
- 1 anchovy with 1 tsp of the oil from the can or 1 tsp anchovy paste*
- 4 tsp dried oregano (preferably Greek)
- 1/2 tsp crushed chili flakes
- 3 tsp brown sugar (to taste)
- 1 tsp of either worsteshire sauce or 1 tsp cinnamon**
In a medium saucepan, fill with water about 2/3 of the way to the top. Add the tomatoes and bring the water to a simmering boil. Boil the tomatoes until the peels split. Remove the tomatoes from the water and place on a towel to cool slightly. The skins should be easily peeled off by hand. Cut off the tops of the tomatoes and discard. Chop the tomatoes roughly on a board and set them aside.
Lightly brown the garlic in the oil and add the tomatoes and remaining ingredients, except for the sugar, worsteshire sauce (or cinnamon). Using a hand blender, pulverize the sauce leaving it just a little rough, with no obvious pieces of tomato left.
Heat the sauce through and continue cooking on a low heat until some of the water evaporates and the sauce begins to thicken.
At this point you can add the sugar to taste. Then you can divide the sauce in two if you want to use worsteshire in one and cinnamon in the other (don't forget to halve these ingredients as well).
* The anchovy adds depth, but you will not taste it in the sauce. It does make a big difference.
** I was surprised to find that both worsteshire sauce or cinnamon added a wonderful depth to the sauce but were virtually undetectable. I highly recommend adding one or the other.
I only use Grande cheese blend with mozzarella and provolone for my pizzas. It is the brand that all the best pizzerias use. I also mail order my pepperoni (Ezzo Pizza Pepperoni) from Pennsylvania Macaroni Company. It is outstanding and far better than anything I can buy at my grocers. I also buy Caputo 00 flour from them and it makes a huge difference. One of the members of the forum said Giusto flour is excellent also. While I have not yet tried it, I have heard from several professional bakers that they use it as well.
Follow my directions for crust preparation and baking the pizza from this link: Pizza Margherita.