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Aquacotta Soup

1/2 cup olive oil
A six inch stick of celery, minced
1 small carrot, minced
3 small onions, minced
1/2 small, crumbled hot pepper, or more, to taste
Salt to taste
2 pounds beet greens or spinach, stemmed, washed and coarsely chopped
1 pound peeled, chopped ripe tomatoes
1 pound vegetables peas, beans, bell peppers, artichoke hearts, (optional)
1 1/2 quarts boiling water
5 eggs, beaten in a bowl
1/2 cup grated pecorino Toscano
1/2 teaspoon salt (optional)
Thinly sliced toasted Italian bread

Set a heavy bottomed pan on the fire. When it's hot, add the oil
and the celery, carrots and onion mixed; season the mixture with
salt and the chili pepper. When the onions have turned translucent,
add the greens. Cover and cook over low heat till the greens have
wilted, then add the tomatoes and the other vegetables, if you're
including them. Simmer for about twenty minutes, then add the
boiling water. Check the seasoning, and simmer for another twenty
minutes. Meanwhile, mix the eggs and cheese together, adding salt
if necessary. Line the bottoms of your soup bowls with thinly sliced
toasted bread and spoon the beaten egg mixture over the bread.
Bring the soup to the table, stir it well, and ladle it into the
bowls. Serves six.


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