Acquacotta

  • by Nonna Box March 2, 2022
  • |
  • Last Updated on March 2, 2022
Acquacotta recipe tuscan soup

What is Acquacotta?

Acquacotta is a simple and tasty soup that is a staple of the lower Maremma area of Tuscany, encompassing Maremma Grossetana and the Tuscia area in the Viterbo province. Acquacotto is part of other Tuscan soups like pancotto and ribollita.

Depending on the region, the dish has several variations. The Viterbo version includes garlic, onion, chicory, potatoes, olive oil, water, seasonal herbs, egg, or, alternatively, cod, and bread.

Conversely, the most common version of Tuscan Acquacotta involves the use of onion, celery, tomato, olive oil, water, basil, grated pecorino, egg, and toasted stale bread.

Every August, in the province of Grosseto,  numerous Acquacotta festivals are held in villages on the slopes of Mount Amiata.

History and Origin

The Maremma is a coastal region difficult to define in terms of borders. This large area between southern Tuscany and northern Lazio is a world of its own. Maremma is truly an island in the heart of Italy. Throughout history, it has always been a poor and harsh land. Her inhabitants have a rich history and a unique identity that they have proudly defended for centuries.

The origins of Acquacotta date back to a common mid-day meal made by the butteri. These herders would ride through the land, transporting their flock from pasture to pasture. During their long travels, they would enjoy this ancient form of acquacotta, gathering the ingredients directly from the countryside. 

The butteri carried Tuscan bread, olive oil, and salt in a catana,  a leather haversack.  The remaining ingredients would be collected during their travels.  Colloquially, this soup was known as minestra di sassi, literally ‘soup of stones’, because, depending on the season,  the herdsmen would add anything they could find to it.

tuscan soup recipe acquacotta soup

tuscan soup recipe acquacotta soup

Acquacotta Maremmana

A delicious vegetable Tuscan soup from Maremma which combines fresh ingredients with eggs and Tuscan bread.
5 from 2 votes
Print Pin Rate
Course: Soup
Cuisine: Italian
Keyword: acquacotta, bean soup, maremma
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 30 minutes
Total Time: 40 minutes
Servings: 4 people
Calories: 333kcal
Author: Nonna Box

Ingredients

  • 500 gr mixed wild herbs radish, chicory, cicerbite, nettles, borage, wild chard, wild mustard
  • 2 l water approximately
  • 1 large onion blonde or red according to preference
  • 2 sticks celery
  • 1 carrot large
  • 1 jar peeled tomatoes or 300 grams of tomato puree
  • 300 gr Tuscan bread or sourdough bread
  • pecorino toscano cheese to taste
  • 4 eggs Large. Free range and pasture raised are preferable.
  • extra virgin olive oil to taste
  • salt or a vegetable bouillon.
  • black pepper to taste

Instructions

  • Wash and rinse the herbs in plenty of water. It is advisable that you wash the herbs with a water and baking soda mixture to cleanse them of any soil residue. Shred the herbs.
  • Finely slice the onions, celery and carrots.
  • In a large pot, add two tablespoons of olive oil, a little water, and add the sliced vegetables, and cook over medium heat for 5-6 minutes.
  • When the onions are soft and translucent, add the herbs, the seasonings, and finally the tomato, diluted with hot water. Cover the pot and cook over low heat for about 30 minutes. As it simmers, add more water from time to time in order to ensure that your soup does not thicken too much during the cooking process. (Do not worry! The bread will absorb the broth.)
  • After 30 minutes, taste and season with salt accordingly.
  • Cut the bread into thick slices, toast it in the oven on the broil setting and arrange 1-2 slices per plate.
  • You can break the eggs directly into the hot soup just before pouring it on the bread, or poach them separately, and arrange them on top of the soup.
  • Pour the soup over the bread, sprinkle with grated pecorino cheese, add a pinch of freshly ground pepper, and add a drizzle of olive oil on top.
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