Friday, February 11, 2011

Roasted Red Pepper & Tomato Pizza Sauce

So I just had an amazing weekend, and I hope you did too!  Even though the weather has been terrible lately, it was a perfect excuse for soup, and lounging around not doing too much.  That being said, it made for a very calm week.  As a result I decided wanted to cook this past weekend.  Mind you, not once, but twice!  That is big for me.  I love cooking, but to make time to cook something good, and not just a quick, staple meal, but a nice meal that we both enjoyed!  Lucky for me I have the best fiance ever who knew I was really excited about cooking and had my heart set on using certain ingredients, so he braved the icy roads and went to three different grocery stores just to find what I wanted (most stores hadn't been able to get trucks and re-stock due to the weather).

If you are anything like me, you've tried making homemade pizza using jarred spaghetti sauce as the sauce and then when you tasted the pizza something was just off.  In my next run around with homemade pizza I used spaghetti sauce but added some garlic and other seasonings to try and imitate pizza sauce.  That didn't work either.  The next time I was at the store buying pizza supplies I noticed actual pizza sauce!  Genius...that did the trick!  (Boboli pizza sauce is what I like.)  This weekend I decided to go all out and tackle making my own pizza sauce, as I had big plans for what I wanted to do with it.


5 Roma Tomatoes
1 Red bell pepper
3/4 - 1 head of garlic (depending on how much you like garlic)
1 (6oz.) can Tomato paste
6oz. warm water (just use the tomato past can)
4 Tbs. grated Parmesan cheese
1 tsp. Honey
1 tsp. Anchovy paste (optional, but would highly recommend)
1 1/2 tsp onion powder
1/2 tsp dried oregano
1/2 tsp dried marjoram
1/2 tsp dried basil
1/2 tsp ground black pepper
1/2 tsp cayenne pepper
1/2 tsp dried Red pepper flakes
2 Tbs. warm water
Salt to taste


This is the simplest recipe ever! 

Quarter the tomatoes and slice the red bell pepper into large slices. 

Put the tomatoes, bell pepper, and garlic on a foil lined baking sheet and sprinkle with some sea salt and freshly ground black pepper (for your own sake, line the baking sheet with foil, otherwise you will be sad during your clean-up)

(Yes I initially forgot I wanted to roast the garlic at well,
but I remembered and added it like a minute later)

Roast the vegetables at 425 degrees Fahrenheit for about 20 minutes or until the peppers get a nice charred skin. 

Take the pepper slices and put in a Ziploc bag to rest for about 15 minutes.

D'oh! Sorry about the a glare.  :-P
Meanwhile process the tomatoes and garlic in a food processor until smooth.

Add the rest of the ingredients to a sauce pan and slowly cook on low while the peppers are resting.

Once the peppers are cooled, you should be able to easily peel the charred skin off of the peppers.  Process the peppers with 2 Tbs of warm water and add to the rest of the sauce.

Let the sauce cook for about 5 more minutes after the pepper is added, then salt to taste.  I like my sauces with a kick, and since this sauce is used as a pizza sauce, its a bit more spicey than a typical maranara sauce.  If you are worried about it being too spicey you can either start with 1/4 tsp of cayanne pepper and 1/4 tsp of red pepper and add to taste, or add another teaspoon of honey to the end sauce. 

Makes enough sauce to cover two medium sized pizza's.

Amanda's Tips:
This sauce freezes very well!  I would suggest making a double batch and freezing half so that next time you are in the mood for pizza, you've already got a great sauce made!

A foreshadow to what's coming up: Remember, a great marinara sauce can be used for more than just saucing a pizza!  :-D

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