- Yield: 30
- Prep Time: 10 minutes
- Cook Time: 20 minutes
If you're anything like me, you are in love with "La Cocina Italiana" and everything Italian is your best friend (and worst enemy at the gym). But joke aside, its diversity and use of fresh, seasonal ingredients make it so delightful. And one of my most treasured delights is a well made, classic risotto (I will share my recipe for that in another blog).
The problem with risotto, however, is that it's almost impossible to make in small amounts, especially for single households like mine. Who said problem? Leftover risotto is actually some of the best things you can have in your fridge. Together with some ingredients you likely have on hand anyway, you can make these deliciously tasty rice balls and snack on them instead of eating dinner (that's what I did last time).
There's really no limit as to what kind of risotto you do this too. But you should avoid the ones with many vegetables in them, as they tend to retain water and make the frying process difficult and the final result likely to break apart. You're free to stuff you arancini with anything you'd like: hearty meat sauce, pieces of cheese, prosciutto... let your ideas run wild and free.
The recipe below is good for about 30 pieces, but it really depends on the size of the final balls. I like mine rather on the small side. As a rule of thumb, I add half a cup of breadcrumbs, one egg and half a cup of parmesan cheese to each cup of leftover risotto.
- Risotto - 2 cups
- Panko Breadcrumbs - 2 cups
- Parmesan - 1 cup, finely grated
- Eggs - 2, large, beaten
- Vegetable Oil - 1 quart
- To drizzle
- Sour Cream - 1/4 cup
- Milk - 1 tbsp, whole
- Chipotle Peppers - 1 tsp, minced, in adobo sauce
- Salt - to taste
- In a large bowl, beat the eggs and stir in salt and pepper.
- Add risotto (ideally from the fridge), cheese and 1 cup of the breadcrumbs and combine it well. The result should be firm enough to make little balls out of it.
- Use an ice cream scoop or any other tool to help you make portions of uniform size. Once you're done portioning it out, roll them into little balls and then around in the other half of the breadcrumbs.
- The mixture will be moist enough for the breadcrumbs to stick without additional egg or flour, so the breading part is super easy.
- Once your done, put the breaded rice balls into the fridge for at least 30 minutes to firm them up again for the frying.
- In a saucepan with high walls and a thick bottom add neutral vegetable oil so it is at least 2 - 3 inches high, and heat it over medium high heat up to 350° Fahrenheit. I suggest using a sugar thermometer to make sure, the temperature is right. Too low and the balls will soak up all the oil and become very greasy, too high and they burn on the outside before the center is nice and warm (and before the cheese is melted).
- Deep fry in small batches, always watching the temperature. Put on kitchen paper to drain excess fat.
- For the drizzle, stir all ingredients together and then use a spoon to add it to the fried arancini.