There are over 5,000 varieties of tomato in the world today from yellow cherry tomatoes and green plum tomatoes to red beef tomatoes! It was in Naples that tomatoes transformed the original white pizza into the red, tomato-topped variety we know today. Italian cooking without the tomato would truly be unthinkable. Tomatoes can be bought in many varieties: fresh, tinned, pureed, sun-dried and semi-dried are all readily available today. Tomatoes are made up of about 9*4 per cent water and must always be well drained, whether fresh or tinned, in order to avoid a soggy pizza
Tinned tomatoes – these are scalded, peeled and lightly salted before being tinned. Tinned tomatoes are a very popular choice for pizza makers today and are of equal quality to the fresh variety. In many cases, it is the superior, unblemished tomatoes that are sent away for canning when the not so perfect tomatoes are left behind for fresh sale.
Tomato puree – many professional pizza makers steer clear of tomato puree, arguing that it tends to dull the other flavours, making all pizzas taste the same. We’re not sure if this is truly the case and it is certainly a useful ingredient if you want to assemble a pizza in a hurry.