Arancini at Rubirosa (Food Memories of 2011, No. 11)

Each day in December, I'm remembering and giving thanks for some food experience from the year. One of my favorite new restaurants in New York  in the last year or so is Rubirosa, a small Italian-American restaurant in that area of New York that's half Little Italy and half Soho.

One of the most surprising things I ate there (twice) was arancini ($9). Arancini are deep-fried rice balls. It's not a food I typically enjoy all that much, and I would never have eaten them at Rubirosa except that other people at the table wanted to share an order. They were by far my favorite thing at the restaurant. The rice was moist and gooey, held together with butter and two kinds of cheese, with bits of prosciutto strewn throughout. They're rich and heavy, but so divine.

I loved them so much, I coaxed Boyfriend into going back to the restaurant within a month of the first time we ate that. There's unheard of for us. We try to go somewhere different as often as possible. But I loved those deep-friend rice balls so much, I just had to return pretty much immediately.