I realize that this topic is a matter of taste. Regardless, I was wondering what ingredients you all are using in your spice packs, the percentages of each ingredient and any shortcuts that may exist (i.e., do you rehydrate the dry ingredients?; do you use fresh garlic or powder/granulated?; do you boil out the dry garlic to keep it from thickening the sauce?; do pre-made spice packs exist?)? Finally, is there a trick to portioning the spices for different batch sizes? I am looking to recreate a NYC style sauce, any suggestions and recipes are appreciated!
We use dried spices/herbs for our sauce. We make either a full batch (4 cans) or half batch (2 cans) of sauce every time. The spices I blend in 1 pound increments . . . using 1 lb bags of each spice. Measure 3 oz of blend into 4-can and 1.5 oz into a 2-can batch.
I work hard to make sure we make sauce at least 1 day ahead so spices rehydrate and sauce sets up better. I catually LIKE the little bit of gelatinization of the sauces from my garlic, but I don’ get it as bad as others since I used granulated roasted garlic.
My sauce is generally this:
2 cans crushed plum tomatoes
2 cans super heavy pizza sauce with basil
1 can tap water
3 ounces dried spice blend
Spices I use are 1:1:1 oregano, granulated garlic and black pepper. Actually, the black pepper I use now is subdivided with some specialty peppercorns that I don’t give out in public forum, and only to close friends. the above blend does a very nicely seasoned, but not spicy sauce. One big key for my sauce is that I order spices from a co-op that packages in oxygen free aluminized bags . . . and they outpace anything in a plastic tub. the oregano is country-specific and identified on the bag. Buying off the shelf at Sam’s or some other warehouse buying club will kill the flavor in your sauce.
Sauces I use are Stanislaus 7-11 and Saporito sauce with basil. Hooodalolly! When I changed from my previous heavy pizza sauce (Roseli) to the Saporito, my sauce went up in flavor, sweetness and tomatoiness. The previous sauce was very good and drew customers to me, but Stanislaus really does provide a superior product in my taste opinion (and it csots me actually less with theirs now).
We use dry spices and purchased in 1 lb containers and chopped garlic. We only make one size batch of sauce (about 5 gallons). In general at this time of year (somewhat slower than average) we have about 20 gallons of sauce prepped so we are a couple of days ahead on sauce which lets the spices rehydrate and fully get into the sauce. In the winter when we are really busy we will have about 50 gallons of sauce in the walkin which is a two day supply so we are making more every day in order to stay ahead and let the spices do their thing.
Thanks guys! I really appreciate the responses.