“Acqua cotta”: a typical dish
“Acqua Cotta” is a peasant food, which belongs to the popular tradition. This food is now almost forgotten, but it can be found in many restaurants of Montepulciano serving typical dishes.
In the past, “Acqua Cotta” used to be cooked in winter nights alternatively to the “Ribollita” and the “Pappa al pomodoro”. Peasants couldn’t afford either meat or more expensive foods and therefore they ate the few products they got from the land: onion, tomato, celery, parsley, olive oil, pecorino, stale bread and eggs.
The story of this dish is very old and talks about a poor young girl, whose mother died when she was just ten. Hers, was a big family for she had 5 elder brothers and her father. Considering her little age and their economical condition, she was not able to make proper meals for her family. She was a good worker, so she decided to help her family by working for an old woman who lived in the neighbourhood. She received just 3eggs a day, a small portion of cheese and some bread, which were not certainly enough to feed those hungry mouths. So the young girl decided to make a soup containing all those ingredients adding then some products which land offered, instead of cooking them separately. Her men really loved this simply and nutritious soup, and it was so successful that after few weeks this dish became the most popular soup eaten during dinner after a day of work in the fields.