by Carmen Allan-Petale
After eating the delicious risotto balls at the food festival on South Bank recently, I decided to make them at home. When researching about the origin of the humble risotto ball, I discovered that they’re normally made to use up leftover risotto and are often served as appertisers.
The dish originated from Sicily and are called arancini or arancine in Italian, which is the word for orange because the balls look that colour when fried. Mine looked a little brown but they still tasted delicious.
To make risotto balls
Add one finely chopped onion and two cloves of crushed garlic and cook with a lashing of olive oil for two minutes until softened.
Stir in 300g of risotto rice and cook for three minutes, stirring so that it is covered with oil. Add 750ml of chicken stock and cook, stirring for about 15 minutes.
The rice should be a bit drier and more al dente than traditional risotto when cooked. Add 60g of grated parmesan and season.
Cool in the fridge for half an hour.
Roll the risotto into balls (I made ‘giant’ sized ones that were about the size of a golf ball) and cover in plain flour, before dipping in an egg mixture. This mixture is made from three beaten eggs. Roll in breadcrumbs and then drop the ball into a frying pan filled with vegetable oil.
The oil should come up halfway around the risotto ball. Fry on a medium heat and then roll on paper towel to remove excess oil before putting in the oven to keep warm while you make the rest of the balls.
I served my risotto balls with mayonnaise and a salad but feel free to serve it with lamb chops or stew.
Inspired by a recipe from taste.com.au.