Ross-il-forn is a very popular Maltese dish very much like Arancini Scicilani is to the Sicilians. The concept is similar except,in this case,the rice is cooked separately,combined with a flavorful meat sauce, eggs and topped with cheese then baked.Just rustic and super delicious. It is ideal to prepare with left over rice and some ground meat.I often use Buffalo or lamb to change it up a bit.
Photograph by Rahul Mahtani
1 cup short grain rice, cooked
1 lb ground meat,such as Buffalo or lamb
1 small can tomato paste
a few sprigs each Oregano, Basil and parsley, chopped
2 cloves garlic,finely minced
1 small onion,finely minced
1 cup red wine
1 bay leaf.
3 eggs beaten
1/2 cup each freshly grated pecorino romano and Parmigiano Reggiano cheese
Heat a saucepan and add 2 tablespoons of olive oil.Allow to heat,then saute onion till translucent. Add garlic and saute 2 more minutes.
Add meat and use wooden spoon to break up meat. Cook on medium heat until meat browns. Stir in tomato paste and saute 3 to 4 minutes. Stir in chopped herbs and bay leaf. season with salt and pepper.
Pour in wine and allow to simmer 10 to 15 minutes on medium low heat, covered. Turn off heat and allow meat to cool.
Preheat oven to 350*F
In a separate dish beat eggs.Season with salt and pepper. Stir in half of both cheese. Add in the cooked rice and stir gently so as not to break up the rice.
Stir in the cooked meat, once again to incorporate but not break up the rice.
Pour into baking dish and top with the balance cheese.
Bake for 25 to 30 minutes until set and cheese melted. serve.