Makes about 15
This is a truly delectable little tidbit. Suppli are fried rice balls and there are many types. Why is this one called “Telefono,” or Telephone? Because when you bite into one while still hot, the melted Mozzarella inside makes strings like telephone wires.
About 2 cups cooked white rice
1 egg, slightly beaten
1/2 cup Italian breadcrumbs
1/4 cup Parmesan cheese
1 teaspoon tomato paste
1 tablespoon finely minced fresh basal
2 to 3 cloves of roasted garlic, finely minced
Fresh coarse ground black pepper to taste
1/2 inch cubes or balls of fresh mozzarella
2 eggs, lightly beaten
Oil for frying
Combine the first eight ingredients in a bowl and mix well. The resulting texture should hold its shape when squeezed into a ball. If it is too wet, add a few more bread crumbs. Form into balls about the size of a walnut. Make a hole with your thumb and insert a piece or ball of the mozzarella. Pinch the ball closed and set aside. Continue until all the balls are stuffed.
Place the all-purpose flour, additional eggs and additional breadcrumbs in three separate flat bowls. Put about three inches of oil in a deep fryer, heavy pot or wok and bring to deep frying temperature using a cooking thermometer.
Roll each ball in the dish with flour, then dip in the egg, then roll in bread crumbs. Fry the balls a few at a time until they are golden brown, about three minutes. Remove from the hot oil with a slotted spoon and drain on paper towels or pieces of brown paper bag. Serve warm.