Sauce pizzaiola

Sauce pizzaiola

Leiths How to Cook
600 ml
Peter Cassidy


Quantity Ingredient
1 onion
2 tablespoons olive oil
3-4 garlic cloves
2 x 400 g tins plum tomatoes
2 tablespoons tomato puree
1-1 1/2 teaspoons dried oregano
1 teaspoon dried basil
1 bay leaf
2 teaspoons caster sugar
freshly ground black pepper


  1. Halve, peel and finely dice the onion. Heat the olive oil in a saucepan, add the onion and cover with a cartouche and lid. Sweat until soft but not coloured. Peel and crush the garlic, add to the onion and cook for 1 minute.
  2. Coarsely chop the tomatoes and add them and their juice to the pan, with the tomato purée, oregano, basil, bay leaf and sugar. Season with salt and pepper and bring to the boil, then turn down the heat and simmer gently for 50–60 minutes until reduced to a thick purée. Discard the bay leaf. Taste and adjust the seasoning.
  3. The sauce can be left textured or puréed to a smooth consistency, depending on use. It is generally served with steak but makes an excellent simple pasta sauce too.


  • Roasted tomato sauce: Substitute slow-roasted tomatoes for tinned: cut 1 kg ripe tomatoes in half and place in a shallow roasting tin. Scatter over 5 diced shallots, 3 crushed garlic cloves, a few thyme sprigs, 75 ml olive oil and seasoning. Slow-roast in an oven preheated to 120ºC for 3–4 hours. Pick off the tomato skins and discard the thyme. The shallots and garlic can be included in the sauce.

    Roasted tomato and red pepper sauce: Add 2 roasted, skinned, deseeded and finely diced peppers to the roasted tomato sauce variation.
Leiths School of food and wine
cookery course
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