Together with pasta alla carbonara, gricia and cacio e pepe, the supplì is one of the pillars of Roman cuisine and the main street food of the Italian capital.
The name Supplì is not Roman, but rather derives from the French “surprise”, due to the filling inside, which represents a surprise (years ago only with meat and today also with mozzarella).
It is said that it was in fact the French, with Napoleon’s soldiers, who were the first to bring a white rice ball filled with meat to Rome. The Romans later modified the recipe and called them “suppli”.
They differ from Sicilian arancini for two reasons in particular: for their cylindrical shape and for the dressing of the rice, which is normally prepared with tomato sauce or meat sauce.
The Roman supplì are also called “supplì al telefono”, because they recall the shape of the classic telephone when they are tasted by opening them in half and the mozzarella in the middle melts by connecting the two parts of the supplì previously opened with the hands, as if it were the thread of a telephone.
Chop the onion finely, brown it in a pan with oil and then add the minced meat. Brown the meat well and then add the white wine until it evaporates.
Add the tomato puree and leave to cook for about half an hour. Then add salt, pepper and pour the rice into the pan.
Then add the stock until completely cooked and let it rest for about an hour.
After cutting the mozzarella into cubes, form elongated balls with the rice and put the mozzarella cubes inside them.
For the breadcrumbs, beat the eggs and dip the balls in them. Then roll the balls into the breadcrumbs and fry them in a pan with plenty of hot seed oil (or in a fryer). They are ready when they are crunchy and golden on the surface.
Would you like to taste the original supplì from Rome? Come and try one of our food tours in Rome…you won’t regret it!
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