Arancini aka Fried Risotto aka Little Balls of Heaven!! Delicious in Every. Way. Possible. Make them, ASAP😊
Basic Risotto Recipe:
- 150grams of Pancetta, diced
- 1/2 Cup minced shallots (you could also sub white onion)
- 2 Cups Arborio Rice
- 1 1/2 Cups Freshly grated Parmigiano-Reggiano
- 6 Cups Chicken Broth, preferably homemade
- 3/4 Cups White Wine
- Salt & Pepper
For the Arancini:
- AP Flour
- 4-5 Large Eggs
- Bread Crumbs
- Salt and Pepper
- Vegetable oil for frying
- Freshly Grated Parmigiano-Reggiano Cheese, for serving
- Fresh Basil, for serving
- Marina Sauce, Pesto, Pesto Aioli for serving
- Optional: small chunks of Mozzarella Cheese for stuffing
For the Risotto:
- In a medium pot, bring broth to a simmer and keep warm on low heat.
- Over medium-low heat in a medium size Dutch Oven, add a few TBSP of EVOO and the diced pancetta. Cook until browned and crispy, 8 minutes or so. Using a slotted spoon, carefully removed the cooked pancetta into small dish, set aside until ready to use.
- If you have a decent amount of fat left in the pan (about 1/4 cup) add the minced shallots directly into the fat. If your pan is a bit dry, add a few drizzles of EVOO, let it heat up and then add the shallots. You want to cook the shallots for about 2 minutes until they are translucent, not browned.
- Increase the heat to medium and add the rice. Toast the rice for about 2 minutes while stirring frequently.
- Deglaze the pan with the wine, set the timer for 18 minutes.
- Once the wine has reduced by about half, slowly start incorporating the broth. Using a ladle, adding about 1/2-1 cup at a time and stirring the rice in a figure 8 movment (you don’t have to stir constantly for 18 minutes but every 30-60 seconds). Don’t add to much broth* at once, the progressive additions of broth and constant stirring is what develops the starch and creates that creamy texture. Start tasting your Risotto around 16 minutes for doneness. It should be “Al dente”. Mine usually takes about 18-19 minutes.
- When the rice is cooked to your liking, remove from heat, add the grated cheese and the crispy pancetta. Stir everything to combine and adjust seasoning to taste. Serve immediately.
- If you are making this recipe fully for Arancini, Spread the Risotto into a 9X13 Dish and cool completely in the fridge.
For the Arancini:
- Once the Risotto is cooled completely, use a small scoop (about 2 TBSP) and make as many Arancini you can with the mixture you have. This may vary depending if you use leftovers or make the recipe above. This recipe should make about 18-20 Arancini. They should be about the size of a golf ball.
- Once you’ve scooped out all the Arancini. Using your hands, try to shape them so they are nice and round. Set them on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper and set them in the freezer for about an hour to firm them up. This makes them easy to work with in the breading process.
**If you want to stuff the Arancini with cheese, when you scoop them out, make a small disk. Place the cheese in the middle and fold the edges around to cheese then shape into a ball.
- You will need to set up a breading station:
– The first dish: AP Flour, seasoned with salt & pepper. I would say start with like a heaping cup.
– The second dish: Beaten eggs, seasoned with salt & pepper. Start with 4 eggs then you can always add another on if you need more.
– The third dish: A mixture of breadcrumbs and panko, seasoned with salt and pepper.
- One Arancini at a time, dip them in the flour, shake off the excess, then dip them in the eggs mixture. Lastly, coat completely in the breadcrumb mixture, shake off the excess. Place them on the baking sheet and continue until they are all coated.
- At this point, you can pop the Arancini in the freezer until ready to use or proceed to frying them. I like using a deepfryer but a dutch oven filled with oil with a thermometer works well also. Set the oil to 350 and work in batches. It should take about 4 minutes or so, until they are golden brown.When they come out of the oil, set them on a paper towel lined dish, season them with salt. Then, keep them in a 250-300 degrees oven to keep them warm until ready to serve.
- When you plate them up, top them with some freshly grated parm, chopped basil and serve them up with your dipping sauce of choice.
Keywords: Arancini, Risotto, Appetizers