I didn't mean to mislead you - this post will not be about my famous risotto recipe. Although I will say risotto is one of the first things my Dad taught me how to make. It is also my "go-to" if I am having someone over and looking to impress them with my culinary skills.
I did not gather you here today to talk about what makes my risotto so great - I came to talk about the case for making a whole bunch of it when you do.
Arancini. The deep fried, cheese stuffed, golden brown rice balls of goodness.
My recipe is pretty straight forward, and once again I will be relying on my Dutch oven for the heavy lifting on this one.
Make your favorite risotto recipe - whatever your own "go-to" is. You put peas and baby bellas in yours? Awesome. Homemade hot sausage? Perfect. Pancetta and parsley? Asparagus and shiitakes? Great - whatever I get it.
Now, I honestly don't know if you can make arancini the same day as you make risotto - I don't know, and I don't want to know. I always make mine a few days afterwards - one or two seems to have worked perfectly for me in the past.
OK, now that the risotto is cold and sticky, toss a couple of cups in a bowl along with two beaten eggs, a cup of Parmesan and two cups of breadcrumbs. I would rather not get in to an argument over what kind of breadcrumbs right now, if you use Italian flavored great - if not, good for you too - I do.
Mix all of that up, form little patties and stick a cubed hunk of fresh mozzarella in the center and then roll in to a ball - I like golf ball size. On a separate plate dump out some more breadcrumbs and roll the little balls in the breadcrumbs and coat all over. Set these aside and get your oil cooking.
With the oil, again I use my Dutch oven to minimize splatter as much as I can, put enough oil in your cooking vessel to completely cover the balls. Get the oil up to 325 - 350 and toss those bad boys in. Keep an eye on them and push them all around getting them flipped and golden brown on all sides. If you have your oil at the perfect temp they should not burn and you want to leave in long enough for not only the risotto to get hot - but the cheese in the center to get gooey and start to melt. - four or five minutes is more than enough time to accomplish all of this.
Grab those balls out of the oil with tongs and place on a plate covered in paper towels to drain off some of that oil. Do the rest in as many batches as you need. You can keep the balls warm in an oven or closed microwave if need be - or if your house is anything like mine they will be eaten as they are ready.
- 1-2 Day old risotto
- 2 eggs
- 3 cups of bread crumbs
- 2 cups of Parmesan cheese
- vegetable oil
- fresh mozzarella