25 October 2009

Creamy Mushroom Risotto Balls

Risotto balls or Arancini balls make great starters or finger food type snacks. Once you have the base risotto made up, the process to make them into risotto balls is really quick and easy. All you really need is some flour, beaten up eggs and breadcrumbs. As a little extra, I prefer to add a small cube of cheese into the risotto ball. The deep frying process melts the cheese and crisps the breadcrumb layer. So that each little ball is crispy on the outside with its own molten cheesy center. Now how can anyone resist that ??! :P

Creamy Mushroom Risotto Balls
Adapted from Fratelli Fresh's recipe on Arancini Balls in Vogue Magazine

For the Risotto:
  • 1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon butter
  • 1 medium onion (chopped finely)
  • 1 leek (white and light green part only, finely sliced)
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 3 - 4 cloves garlic, peeled and finely chopped
  • 250g mushrooms (sliced)
  • ¼ teaspoon Salt
  • ¼ teaspoon ground black pepper
  • 2 cups Arborio rice
  • 250ml white wine
  • 4 pieces of dried porcini mushroom
  • 1 litre chicken or vegetable stock
  • 2 tablespoons finely chopped parsley
  • 2 tablespoons chopped sage
  • 2 tablespoons chives (finely sliced)
  • 100g Parmesan cheese
  • 1 tablespoon butter
  1. Bring the broth with the dried porcini mushrooms to a simmer
  2. Heat a large pot over a medium-high flame. Add in the olive oil and butter.
  3. As the butter melts, saute the onion and leek for 1 minute until it softens but doesn't brown.
  4. Add in the bay leaf, sliced mushrooms and chopped garlic and cook for another minute
  5. Season with freshly ground black pepper and salt
  6. Add the rice and saute for another minute, until it turns translucent.
  7. Pour in the wine and cook until the alcohol has evapourated and the rice as absorbed all the liquid.
  8. Begin to add the broth. One ladle at a time. Add the next ladle only when the previous liquid has been aborbed. Stir occasionally.
  9. Finely slice up the soaked porcini mushrooms (that was in the broth) and add these into the risotto rice
  10. Stop adding the broth when the rice has cooked to the equivalent of al dente for pasta.
  11. Add in the fresh herbs - in this case some parsley, sage & chives.
  12. Stir in the grated Parmesan Cheese then the butter.
  13. Cover the pot and let rest for about 3 minutes. This is the part that helps the risotto turn really creamy. Remove the lid, taste and add salt or more seasoning if required.
  14. Spread the rice out into a tray and allow the rice to cool to room temperature
For the Risotto Balls:
  • Risotto (cold) - See recipe above
  • Plain flour for dusting
  • Beaten eggs (one or two, depending on amount of risotto)
  • Meltable cheese - anything from mozzarella to cheddar (sliced into 1cm cubes)
  • Breadcrumbs
  • Vegetable oil for deep-frying
  1. With dampened hands, take a spoonful of risotto and flatten it out a bit in your hand
  2. Place the cheese cube in the middle then shape cold risotto into 4cm or so balls.
  3. Roll balls in flour. Shake off any excess flour.
  4. Roll balls in the beaten eggs
  5. Transfer and roll balls in breadcrumbs. Shake off any excess.
  6. Heat the vegetable oil in a deep saucepan until its hot enough for frying
  7. Deep fry the balls until golden brown.
  8. Remove the balls and let rest on a plate covered with paper towels
  9. Season with some flaky sea salt and serve immediately with a sauce of your choice.


  • To turn these up a notch, you can drizzle in a couple of drops of truffle oil into the risotto once its finished cooking.
  • You can refrigerate the risotto balls and repeat the 'egg - breadcrumbs' stage again to yield a slightly thicker crunchier coating.
  • The dried porcini mushrooms are optional, but a little bit of these babies do go along way in terms of taste
  • For the fresh herbs, I used Parsley, Sage and Chives. You can substitute with whatever you have available.
  • You can make this recipe up to a day ahead, and leave the pre-formed risotto balls in the refrigerator for up to a day. Just remember to cover them up well so the rice doesn't dry out too much.
  • The mushrooms can be substituted to any other flavoring ingredient like parma ham, seafood, pumpkin and other vegetables.

No comments:

Post a Comment

Related Posts with Thumbnails