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1 large sweet onion (chopped)
2 lbs. ground beef (lean)
1 cup green peas
1 cup tomato sauce for the recipe ( extra sauce for guests to put on top) *See note on bottom.
sea salt & black pepper
5 cups rice
10 cups of water
2 cups mozzarella (grated)
1 cup parmesan cheese (grated)
1. Boil a large pot of water and cook rice. Set rice to the side when done. (once water evaporates and rice is tender)
2. Heat sauté pan with 2 tbs. olive oil. Add onion and let brown lightly.
3. Add meat and brown over medium heat for 8-10 minutes. Then add tomato sauce (add a little more sauce if you like) and a pinch of sea salt and pepper.
4. Add peas and let tomato sauce reduce with pan uncovered.
5. Once mixture has thickened, put to the side and let cool.
6. In a large bowl, mix rice with 4 eggs, mozzarella and parmesan cheese.
7. Add meat mixture to the rice bowl. Mix well by hand. With hands, shape rice into a medium ball.
8. Once rice balls are molded tightly, put them on a sheet pan.
9. Refrigerate for about 30 minutes.
10. Beat remaining 4 eggs in a bowl.
11. Take rice balls from refrigerator, dip them into the eggs, and then roll in bread crumbs.
12. Return to refrigerator and allow to set for another 20 minutes.
13. Heat 1 quart of oil in large deep sauce pan. With a large slotted spoon, gently place rice balls in hot oil.
14. Cook until golden brown on all sides. Let drain on paper towels.
Makes approximately 15-17 large rice balls. (depends on size you prefer) About 45 -50 golf ball sizes ones can be made.
*Note: You can cut this recipe in half, for smaller amounts. With a regular recipe, I usually get 15-17 rice balls of a larger size. It is served as an appetizer on Christmas Eve. Guests also put tomato sauce and grated cheese on top. I usually make a small pot of sauce to have on hand.