Many people believe that the secret to an impeccable pizza lies in its tomato sauce base. A pizza sauce with the perfect texture, acidity, and flavor can make or break the entire pie, cutting through a creamy cheese, softening the salty bite of salami, or enhancing the earthy taste of mushrooms.
For this reason, you must be making your sauce from the right tomatoes. Read on to find out what they are and why using them will make your pizza esquisito.
Best Tomatoes for Pizza Sauce: The Contenders
Plum tomatoes are a type of tomato that are bred specifically to be used in sauces and packed into cans. They have fewer seeds and gelatinous insides than other types of tomatoes, and more solid, fleshy insides. So while you might not always want to put them in your salad, you’ll want them in your pizza sauce!
If you’re ever lucky enough to eat a pizza in Naples, you can guarantee the sauce will be made with San Marzano tomatoes. They grow just outside of the city and are long and skinny with very thick flesh.
They’re very sweet, strong, and not too acidic, so they work perfectly as a robustly flavorful pizza sauce. If you want the authentic San Marzano, you’ll find it canned at your local grocery store. If you’ve gone all the way to Italy and gotten your hands on fresh San Marzanos, the skin is very easy to peel.
If you can’t get all the way to Naples to make your pizza, but you want fresh tomatoes in your sauce, look to Roma tomatoes. Sometimes known as Italian tomatoes, they’re a lot like a San Marzano, but a bit more egg or pear-shaped.
These are grown in the US, Canada, Mexico, Britain, and Australia. They’re full of flavor and are nice and tangy, which makes for a delicious sauce that balances nicely against briny and salty toppings.
These large, succulent heirloom tomatoes (which, as the name would suggest, have Amish origins) are also commonly used in pastes but are more seed-filled and juicy than the tomatoes mentioned above. The fact that they’re big means they’re easy to peel. They’re quite sweet – in fact, they’re sweet enough to enjoy fresh, and you could save some to make a side salad with!
You should try making a sauce with the Margherita tomato just based on its name – they were, after all, named after the pizza! It’s a long, thin, and very firm tomato that’s easy to chop up. For all you budding gardeners, it’s also a very easy plant to grow yourself in your home garden!
Which Tomato is Best for Making Pizza Sauce?
While it might seem easier to just buy a pre-made jar from the store, it’s definitely worth making pizza sauce from scratch at least once.
And experimenting with different types of tomatoes is the best way to find the taste and texture you enjoy the most, and the perfect flavor to go with the toppings you love. It seems like such a small detail, but it makes all the difference in how your finished pie tastes! So – is it pizza night yet?