Porcupine Balls

Total Time:
1 hr 20 min
Prep:
20 min
Cook:
1 hr

Yield:
Serves 4-6 people
Level:
Easy

Ingredients
  • 1 lb lean ground beef
  • 1 1/4 cups uncooked white rice
  • 1 teaspoon dried onion
  • 1 teaspoon Paula Deen Seasoned Salt
  • 1 teaspoon Paula Deen Sweet Italian Herb Blend
  • 1 14 ounce can diced tomatoes with juice
  • 1 10 1/2 ounce can of beef broth
Directions

Preheat oven to 350 F. In a medium bowl, mix 1/2 cup white rice with the ground beef. Add the dried onion, seasoned salt, and Italian seasoning. Mix it together. Roll into 8 or 10 golfball-sized balls. Spread remainder of rice on the bottom of 2-quart baking dish. Pour in the tomatoes and beef broth and stir with a spoon. Put the porcupine balls on top and cover the dish tightly with foil. Bake for 1 hour.


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    My husband has twice said this has little flavor, plus we are experiencing the same dried out meat problems. One hour is WAY too long to cook this meat. We used a higher fat beef (85%instead of the leaner beef we usually buy (93% and it might have helped some on the second try. We cooked for only 40 minutes and meatballs were 189 degrees and hard on the exposed portions. I don't want to completely cover the meatballs in broth because I LIKE the way they look. I will try this again, reducing the temp and altering the seasonings. Hoping third time's a charm.
    I've made this twice, almost exactly as in the recipe. The only thing I did differently was add half of a diced green pepper to the rice part. I used sirloin the first time and the rice was delicious but the meat was brick-hard. The second time, I used lean beef and got the same results. In this second attempt, I checked it in 45 mins. but the rice wasn't done and the meat was already overcooked. The casserole dish I used was just big enough to comfortably accomodate the meat and was tightly covered with foil. The only thing I can think of to change next time, is not to bake it on the lowest oven rack, as I did both times. Has anyone else had this problem? If so, how do we fix it? I would really like this if I could get the meat to turn out properly.
    This is really pretty good, BUT you do have to make some pretty big changes. My daughter chose this to make out of her Paula Deen cookbook and I'm so glad I went online to check the reviews prior to making it - otherwise, we would have had to toss the whole thing! I made these changes: added a large egg to the meat; added about a tsp. each of the dried onion and herbs and 1/2 tsp. to the rice; used long grain white rice - the kind that cooks in about 20 minutes; after cooking it for 1 hour at 350, the meatballs were still pink, so I cooked it for another half hour at 400. After all these changes, it made a for a very nice dinner and my daughter was happy with the result!
    Really? This was awful! I followed the recipe with a group of 10 year old girls that love to cook. The hugest flop ever. After 2 hours the rice still was not cooked, had to add water/broth several times and now just dumped the entire dish in a pot to see if I can boil the rice done! I have never had a problem with a Food Network recipe and have used many in my kids cooking class. Will definitely think twice before using one of these recipes again.
    I tried this recipe and then went back to my husbands family recipe. It differs as follows. Reduce the rice to a half cup, substitute 2 cups of tomato juice and add a table spoon of woestershire sauce and 1/2 tsp. of cinnammin to the sauce. In the meatballs I used a couple of table spoons each of finely dice green pepper and onion. The green pepper and onion add flavor to the meat balls and keep them moist.
    The recipe was very easy for my kids ( ages 8 and 10 ) to follow. My husband assisted a bit but they made most of the dinner themselves. We used jasmine rice and it cooked through perfectly in the dish as well as in the meat. I would add more seasoning to the meatballs but otherwise came out great.
    I used the general theme of the recipe but I love to play with different herbs and stuff so, for Italian seasoning I added 1 tsp ea dried basil and dried oregano and fresh thyme about 1.5 tsp and a tsp fresh rosemary in the meatballs. I also minced a shallot and 2 cloves of fresh garlic in the meatballs. They were great. I like the other lady used cream of mushroom soup instead of beef broth because I didn't have it in the house and used 2 cans of tomatoes with a can and 1/2 water, I also carried the herbs, garlic and shallots to my sauce, same exact measurements. I USED MINUTE RICE, it came out great.
     

     
    I put cheese on top to serve but my husband said, why didn't you put mozzerella on it too and I said because it would cover the porcupine quills, lol. Enjoy this recipe folks it's awesome!!!!!! Every bite I took I kept saying OMG this is so good, lol!!
     

     
    I wish celebrity chefs tried these recipes out first. I followed the directions to the letter. The rice was not even close to cooked. Raw rice in the middle of a meatball does not taste good!
    I found that substituting a can of cream of mushroom soup for the tomatoes is an interesting variation.
    The balls looked great the flavor was good but the recipie needs more liquid The meatball was dry the rice was crunchie. Next time I am adding more broth and perhaps an egg or two to the meat
    I am so excited to see this recipe. My mother used to make Porcupine meat balls in her presure cooker. I never had the recipe and now she is gone. So I was thrilled to see this in your collection. Yummy.
     
    Thanks Paula for all of your wonderful home cooking recipes!
     
    Susan
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