Monday 3 March 2014

Quick and Easy Pizza Sauce

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Sometimes what seems like a frustration is actually a great opportunity in disguise.  Just typing that makes me feel wiser than I really am, but it is definitely something I have learned over and over again during the course of my cooking adventures in China.  Because the way I want to cook, or the things I think should be easy to buy, is often not a possibility I'm forced to get creative, or hands on, or both and either make it work or give up the ghost.

With a pizza craving in full swing, it was time to either do what I can with what I can get, or ignore the craving and hope it goes away (yeah, right).  I didn't particularly feel like making my own sauce, or my own dough, but like I said, you make it work, and in the process you learn a thing or two.

Turns out, pizza sauce is a snap to make! So simple that I doubt I'll ever opt for the store bought stuff again. Seriously, you guys, it's embarrassingly easy. Try it and love it. I know you will!

This sauce is pretty adaptable depending on what you have on hand.  The recipe below outlines what I used, but I've included some notes for suggested additions if you happen to have those items on hand (I did not).

As a note, you can buy mediocre delivery pizza from places like Papa John's and Pizza Hut here (both far worse than their North American counterparts), but I wanted good pizza. Pizza with my ingredients ... so here we are!

Quick and Easy Pizza Sauce

1 1/2 cups tomato sauce, homemade or canned
2 Tbsp tomato paste
1 large clove garlic, chopped or minced
1 Tbsp cooking oil
2 small bay leaves
2 tsp dried basil
1 tsp fresh ground black pepper
pinch of salt
1/2 - 1 tsp sugar to taste
pinch of cayenne or red pepper flakes, optional

  1. Over medium heat combine the garlic and oil in a saucepan.  Cook for about 1 minute until fragrant.
  2. Add the remaining ingredients and stir to combine.
  3. Bring to a light boil and reduce heat and simmer for approximately 20 minutes to allow flavours to meld.
  4. Remove from heat, allow to cool slightly and use on your next homemade pizza!
  5. Alternatively, allow to cool completely, pour into an airtight container and store in the refrigerator for 1 week.
  6. Enjoy!
If I was in Canada I probably would have made my own tomato sauce as well, but this was not a possibility. Canned works perfectly fine.

Extra spices are highly recommended (think oregano or general italian seasoning), I didn't miss them but I made sure to use a fairly flavoured tomato sauce as my base because I knew I would be missing those additions. 

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