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Pimento Stuffed Carolina Gold Rice Balls

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Ingredients

2 cups Carolina gold rice

3 cups chicken stock

1 shallot, minced

1 cup parsley chopped

2 tablespoon butter

1 large sweet potato

1 Vidalia or sweet onion

2 cloves garlic

½ cup apple cider

6 cabbage leaves

½ cup white wine vinegar

¼ cup apple cider vinegar

Gravy

½ cup water

5 pounds porck neck or shoulder

2 tablespoons tomato paste

4 cups pork stock

¼ cup cream

1 cup bourbon

2 teaspoons Crystal hot sauce

2 bunch thyme

2 cups chopped mire poix (carrot, onion, celery)

Salt and pepper

Pimento Cheese

4 cups finely grated cheddar cheese

1 jalapeño, minced and pressed

½ cup roasted red peppers, chopped

1 cup pimentos, chopped

½ cup parsley and chive mix

1 cup cream cheese

2 cups mayonnaise

Lemon juice

Tabasco

Directions

The rice

  1. Mince shallot and sweat in a lightly oiled large pot
  2. Add rice, season with salt and stir for 30 seconds
  3. With a ladle, add chicken stock in 4 oz batches while stirring constantly
  4. Once rice has absorbed stock, add more until rice is cooked through and creamy but not sitting in liquid. Add half of the chopped parsley and butter, and stir to incorporate and melt the butter. If there is to much liquid, strain a little off. The rice should be cooked and creamy but not too wet (this is important for shaping the balls)
  5. Dump rice out onto a tray and allow to cool in the refrigerator overnight.

Pimento Cheese

  1. Place cheddar and cream cheese in mixer and mix until as incorporated as possible.
  2. Slowly add mayo until desired consistency is reached.
  3. Add all solid ingredients and fold in
  4. Season with salt, lemon and Tabasco and allow to sit for one hour before serving

Sweet Potato Puree

  1. Peel and dice the sweet potato and Vidalia onion and place in a sauce pot with the halved garlic cloves.
  2. Sautee in oil and season with salt and pepper.
  3. Add apple cider and simmer until the sweet potatoes are cooked through. Dump contents into a food processor and puree, using olive oil to make it smooth.
  4. Check seasoning and add salt and honey if necessary.

Pickled Cabbage

  1. Slice the cabbage leaves off of the ribs (the thicker inner part of the leaves) and place in a plastic container.
  2. Heat the water with with the wine and cider vinegars, 2 tablespoons of salt and 1 bunch of thyme, and bring to a boil.
  3. Once boiling, strain the liquid over the cabbage and allow to cool in the fridge.

Gravy

  1. Smoke the pork necks (optional) at 180 degrees for 4 hours and set aside.
  2. Put mire poix in a large sauce pot with 2 garlic cloves and 1 bunch of thyme, sauté until soft, add tomato paste and caramelize.
  3. Deglaze with bourbon and reduce by ½.
  4. Add stock to cover the necks, season with hot sauce, salt and pepper, then braise for 2 hours or until tender.
  5. Remove the necks and strain the liquid and return to the pot.
  6. Shred the neck meat and add to liquid in pot.
  7. Simmer until thickened, and add a splash of cream and lemon juice.

Rice Balls

  1. Make a cup in the palm of your hand, then pack 1 heaping tablespoon of rice and mold it into the “cup”.
  2. Place a small ball of pimento cheese in the center of the rice and shape the rice around into a ball, adding more rice if necessary. Set aside and repeat until all rice is gone.
  3. Roll the balls in flour, then egg wash and finally bread crumbs.
  4. Refrigerate until you are ready to cook.

Cooking

  1. Fry the balls in oil until crispy on all sides and hot.
  2. Reheat the puree and gravy on low until warm. Place three dollops of puree on a plate, then place the balls on top of the puree.
  3. Top each ball with a spoonful of the gravy and fold a piece of pickled cabbage in between each ball and on the outside of one (3 pieces of cabbage total).
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