GRANDMA BEA’S ARANCINI (RICE BALLS)
- 1 lb. white rice (uncooked)
- 2 lbs fresh ground beef, preferably ground chuck
- 1 teaspoon salt and 1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
- 1 – 15 oz. can crushed tomatoes, drained
- 1 teaspoon granulated sugar
- 3 large eggs, beaten with a little water
- 2 cups bread crumbs
- Canola, soybean, or peanut oil for frying
Cook rice according to package directions. Rinse and place in a tightly sealed bowl in the refrigerator until chilled.
Season the ground beef and cook in a skillet until fully cooked. Drain the fat, and return to the heat. Add the tomatoes and the sugar. Remove from heat and allow to cool completely.
Take a handful of cold rice and spread it in your palm to cover.
Add a small scoop of ground beef mixture into the center of the rice, and then bring up the rice around the beef to fully enclose the beef in the middle of the rice ball. Rice must completely cover the beef.
Make the remainder of the rice and beef balls and set aside.
Preheat the oil in a deep fry pan to 375° F.
When ready to fry, dredge the rice balls first in the beaten egg, then roll gently in the bread crumbs to fully coat.
Dredge the remainder of the rice balls in the bread crumbs.
Gently drop small batches of breaded rice balls into the oil and fry for about 2 minutes or until golden brown.
Drain on racks or paper towels.
Serve immediately with your favorite marinara, or hold in a warm oven for up to one hour.