During winter times it is really easy to see in Florence’s bakeries and pastry shops these sweet “little balls” covered with sugar: they are called “Frittelle di riso”, and are actually rice fritters.
The recipe belongs to late middle ages and Tuscan peolple were used to bake them in occasion of Saint Joseph’s celebrations (19 March). Try to cook them!
- 1 3/4 cups (350 g) rice — cheap rice that gives off starch as it cooks will be fine
- 1 quart (1 l) whole milk
- The grated zest of a lemon
- 4 tablespoons sugar
- A walnut-sized chunk of unsalted butter
- 3 eggs, separated
- 1 jigger rum or vinsanto
- 1 cup (100 g) flour
- 1 packet active live yeast
- Oil for frying
Begin by cooking the rice until it’s thoroughly cooked in the milk, together with the sugar, lemon zest, and butter. Let the mixture cool, and stir in the three yolks. Stir in the rum or vinsanto. Whip the whites and fold them in, then fold in the flour and the yeast.
Heat oil in a fairly deep pot and fry the mixture, a teaspoon at a time, removing the balls from the pot when they become golden. Drain them on absorbent paper, dust them with granulated sugar, and serve.
Good tip: when you cook them, do A LOT of them, because people always want more!
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