A porcupine may not seem like the best companion for a cuddly Easter bunny, but the ground beef porcupines highlighted below definitely belong at our Easter dinners. My family has predominantly celebrated Easter in the Deep South, and by the time late March or early April get here, we are kind of turkeyed out and ready for a different type of dinner. This usually involves ham and lots of creative side dishes. One of my favorites that Mom often made for family get-togethers are ground beef porcupines.
Ground Beef Porcupines
- 1/2 pound ground beef
- 1/4 cup milk
- 1/8 teaspoon garlic salt
- 1 Tablespoon shortening
- 1 cup water
- 1/4 cup uncooked rice
- 1/4 cup onion
- 1 can tomato sauce (8 oz.)
- 1 Tablespoon Worcestershire sauce
- Salt and pepper to taste
- Two medium bowls (or one small, one medium)
4 to 8 Ground Beef Porcupines
1. Take a medium bowl and combine your ground beef, uncooked rice, milk, and chopped onion until well-blended. I find it is easiest to use your clean hands to ensure proper mixing – particularly since you’re going to get those hands dirty in the next step anyway.
2. When your four ingredients or totally mixed, begin to form balls. You can do four larger balls or eight balls the size of standard meatballs.
Tip: Occasionally a bad measurement may make your porcupine balls harder to form. In this instance, you need to add a bit of extra uncooked rice (or thawed ground beef if you have extra) to the mix to increase the binding ability of the mixture.
3. Sprinkle your salts and pepper across the individual porcupine balls.
4. Place your shortening in a skillet and heat.
5. Add your porcupine balls and cook until lightly browned.
6. Stir your tomato sauce, water and the Worcestershire sauce in a small bowl before pouring into the skillet.
7. Let the ingredients begin to simmer before adjusting your heat to low or your burner’s simmer setting. Let cook for 45 minutes.
8. Monitor regularly and add additional water if necessary.
9. Serve straight out of the skillet or transfer to a serving bowl.
These ground beef porcupines are great fresh and bubbling straight from the stove. They are also awesome warmed up the next day…because Thanksgiving doesn’t have the market cornered on leftovers. For a particularly nice treat, serve them on the day after with a small serving of whole wheat pasta. It isn’t exactly like spaghetti and meatballs – it’s actually a lot better.