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Rice Balls (Arancini)

1 1/2 cups raw rice
3 1/4 cups cold water
2 bouillon cubes
1 pat butter

1/2 lb. lean hamburger
2 or 3 eggs, whisked with a fork
2 Tbs. melted butter
1 cup shredded cheddar cheese
1/2 cup Parmesan or Romano cheese, grated
Salt, Pepper to taste

Flour
Egg wash (1 egg to 1 Tbs. water)
Bread Crumbs (Plain)
Oil for deep frying

Put the rice in a heavy bottom saucepan, and add cold water, bouillon
cubes, and the pat of butter. Bring to a boil over high heat.
Immediately, give one stir and cover. Turing the heat to low.
(As low as possible) Leave the pan on the burner for 20 minutes
without stirring or opening the pan. After 20 minutes, open pan,
and fluff rice with a fork. Rice for this dish should be slightly
sticky. If rice is too dry or fluffy, add a tablespoon of water,
and place back on low heat for a few more minutes. When rice is
thoroughly cooked and sticky, let covered pan cool to room temperature.

While rice is cooling, cook hamburger in an open frypan until it
is thoroughly cooked. Crumble cooked hamburger finely. Drain
cooked hamburger in a colander and discard fat.

Mix cooled rice, hamburger, cheeses, and melted butter. Taste
mixture and correct seasonings by adding salt and pepper to taste.
(I use a lot of pepper, some people add a little oregano here.)
Add beaten eggs, and then mix thoroughly. You want the mixture to
be about the consistency of play dough, albeit lumpy.

Mold the mixture into small balls, about 1-1/2 inches in diameter.
You will need to have wet hands to do this. If you've ever made
meatballs, the process is similar, but you kind of have to press
the rice to make it hold together. Let the finished balls sit out
for 15 minutes or so to firm up.

Roll the rice balls in flour, then egg wash, then breadcrumbs.
Again, let sit out for a few minutes for the coating to firm up on
the rice balls.

Preheat oil in deep fryer to 300 - 325 degrees. Fry the rice balls
a few at a time, until very lightly colored. Place fried rice
balls on cookie sheet, sprayed with Pam. When all the rice balls
are fried, bake in a 350 oven for 20 minutes or so. This is to
make sure that the egg is completely cooked, and to prevent salmonella
poisoning.

Rice balls can be refrigerated for 3 - 4 days, and served warm.
A little tomato sauce on the side for dipping is very good, too.

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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful:
Taste: Ease of Prep: Appearance:
rice balls, February 1, 2004 - 07:42 PM
Reviewer: drew hill from bc
prep time was a bear(3 hrs),but the results were great.One thing I would like to change however , is the batter.I think a crispier shell would be great.

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