The combination of egg and lemon beaten into soups, stews, and vegetable dishes provides extraordinary delicate flavor and visual appeal. Usually this ethereal combination, found most everywhere around the Mediterranean, is added to very simply cooked food, bringing it to new heights.
Some humble products such as lamb breast have fallen out of favor, supplanted by such glamorous ingredients as foie gras and other luxurious meats. In fact, lamb breast, being cheap, juicy, and flavorful, makes a great ingredient for soups. Here the bones, rich in natural gelatin, provide body to this brodetto Pasquale. Some cooks serve the meat as a separate course, but since there is so little of it, I just cube it and float it in the soup.
In Rome, the cheese of choice is pecorino (which is Italian for “sheep”), but you might find it too strong and salty for such a subtle soup. I usually substitute another sheep’s milk cheese, such as a Spanish manchego or even a dry cow’s milk Monterey Jack.
The Slow Mediterranean Kitchen by Paula Wolfert. Copyright © 2003 by Paula Wolfert. Photographs copyright © by Christopher Hirsheimer. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt. All rights reserved.