When we talk about onion soup we can only be sure of one thing; each nation, each region and each little area has its own recipe.
Among all the famous versions there are the very Florentine "Carabaccia" and the very popular French "soupe à l'oignon".
The name of the Florentine soup seams to come from the Greek word "karabos" describing a boat with the form of a husk, maybe to recall the form of the tureen. This recipe can be found in several cookbooks ever since the 1500 under the more antique name "carabazada".
Its great fame is due to Canterina dei Medici- the niece of Lorenzo the Magnificent – who married the second born son of the king of France in 1533. When she moved to Paris she brought along also the best Florentine cooks from the Medicean court that had a great influence on the French court cuisine.
In some way you could even say that the very French "soupe à l'oignon" is just the “daughter” to the Florentine Carabaccia; a dish rich of spices and flavours mixing sweet and salt, according to the cooking trend at the time.
In the original recipe, a part from the red onions, there are almonds, cinnamon, sugar and vinegar. The recipe that we would like to suggest is just one of the many existing variants of the Carabaccia.
1 kg red onions, celery, carrots, salt, pepper, extra virgin olive oil, toasted bread and broth.
Cut the red onions in thin slices, mix it with the chopped celery, carrots, salt and pepper and let it cook in a deep pan with about a half glass of extra virgin olive oil. Let it cook for about an hour stirring once in a while. When it’s almost ready add some broth if necessary. The soup is served on slices of toasted bread dipped in the broth with or without pecorino cheese on top.