We're better off now, and this will be good. To serve 6:
Prep Time: 20 minutes
Cook Time: 2 hours
Total Time: 2 hours, 20 minutes
- 2 1/4 pounds (1k ) red onions (winter onions in Tuscany, white will also work)
- 2 scant cups (400 ml) tomato sauce; commercial will be fine
- A 1-ounce (25 g) slice of pancetta, diced
- Olive oil
- 2 eggs, well beaten
- 3 cups (150 g) freshly grated Parmigiano Reggiano or Grana Padano
- 4-5 basil leaves
- Salt and pepper to taste
- 1 quart (1 liter) boiling water
- Toasted bread -- Tuscan if possible
Heat a quarter cup of olive oil in a pot, preferably terracotta, though metal will work, sauté the pancetta until it is lightly browned, and add the onion (drain it well if you soaked it). Season to taste with salt and pepper, add the basil leaves, cover, and let the onions simmer until they are pale and translucent. Add the tomato and the boiling water, mix, check seasoning, and simmer covered for 90 minutes.
While you are waiting, toast several slices of bread and use them to line your soup bowls.
When the time is up, remove the soup from the fire, and briskly stir in the grated cheese and the eggs; the soup will thicken immediately. Check seasoning a last time, ladle the soup into the bowls, and serve at once.
Yield: 4-6 servings Tuscan Cipollata, a poor cousin of onion soup.