yes, I did say porcupines….those little critters with needles instead of hair…….well, not exactly like those.
One of my childhood’s favorite meals was porcupines, rice and green beans cooked with onion and bacon. We’d have sweet dinner rolls too.
My grandmother would make them especially for us on Sunday afternoons during the summertime. We didn’t have to be rushed home after seeing her for a few hours to get ready for school the next day, so we had time to savor the meal.
My Mother made them a few times for us but it just wasn’t the same. Mother would complain about all the “fussy steps” to making them, and stopped entirely when the eldest of us became a teen.
My husband had never heard of them before so I made them our first week of marriage…and he was hooked. I’ve made them for years now and they never fail to bring a smile to his face when he finds out we are once again having “porcupine” for dinner.
I made them this last camping trip and they turned out just as well as they do at home. Here is the recipe for those adventurous cooks.
1 pound of ground beef, chicken or pork. (beef works best actually)
1 medium onion, chopped
1 cup of rice (if cooking these outside over a grill use “minute rice)
1 small clove garlic, chopped fine.
1 Tablespoon fresh basil (for making them pretty when serving. totally not necessary)
1 large can of low sodium V-8 juice (or other can of multi-veg drink)
Mix rice, onions, seasonings (except basil and garlic) together. form into 1 1/2 inch diameter balls. (should make about 14).
Brown the meatballs in a deep sided fry pan. When browned on all sides, add V-8 juice to the pan and simmer about 10 minutes. Add chopped garlic to the v-8 and bring to a full boil. boil 10 minutes then turn heat down to lowest setting. cover and simmer another 10 minutes.The changes in heat allows the rice to swell and soften without splitting apart the meatballs.
Sprinkle fresh basil over all when completely cooked right before serving. (or not. this is totally up to you)