These arancini are deep fried crispy on the outside gooey on the inside risotto balls. You will start by making the risotto which is not as intimidating as it often sounds. Form them into balls then stiff them with small pieces of mozzarella then they go through a breading process and then they get deeply fried. The base of the risotto is onions and garlic, dice on large onion with two cloves sliced of garlic. Melt some butter in a pan over medium heat until foamy then add the diced onions. Stir occasionally for about five minutes until the onions are nice and soft then add the garlic.
Add arborio rice and stir until well combined with the onion garlic mixture. Add half a cup of white wine that will help to deglaze then let it coof for a few minutes so the alcoholic flavor can evaporate. Start adding the stock and stir it continuously to help it start becoming creamy Let the stock absorb in the rice before adding another ladle. Once the broth has been added and there is very little liquid left, remove from the heat then add in butter, heavy cream, lemon zest, and lemon juice. The lemon flavor will help brighten the risotto a bit, add back pepper and then some parmesan cheese. Give it a stir and at this point, you can serve it.
To turn it into arancini, place a parchment paper on a baking sheet and then sheet out all the risotto, spread it evenly and let it cool. After about an hour, form the arancini, scoop the arancini in your hand, flatten it then place one or two pieces of mozzarella right into the center of it and then fold it around. Line them on a tray and freeze them for ten minutes just to firm up a little bit. To get a really good crust that holds in all the creamy risotto, start off by throwing each one into the flour then into the egg wash an then into the panko.
Line them into another sheet parchment paper then gently lower them into frying oil and fry them for about 6 minutes. Place them in a paper towel lined plate, season with salt and plate them.
- 3 cups low-sodium chicken broth
- Kosher salt
- 1 cup arborio rice
- 2 tablespoons pine nuts, toasted
- 1/2 cup shredded mozzarella cheese (2 ounces)
- 1/2 cup shredded fontina cheese (2 ounces)
- 2 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley
- 2 large eggs
- 1/2 cup grated parmesan cheese
- 1 1/2 cups breadcrumbs
- Vegetable oil, for frying
- Bring the broth and 1/4 teaspoon salt to a boil in a medium saucepan over medium-high heat.
- Stir in the rice, reduce the heat to low and simmer until tender, about 20 minutes.
- Spread on a parchment-lined baking sheet and let cool completely.
- Combine the pine nuts, mozzarella, fontina and parsley in a bowl; set aside.
- Beat the eggs in a large bowl, then stir in the cooled rice, the parmesan, and 2/3 cup breadcrumbs.
- Shape the mixture into sixteen 1 1/2-inch balls.
- Put the remaining breadcrumbs in a shallow bowl. Press your finger into the center of each rice ball, insert 2 teaspoons of the mozzarella mixture, then pinch the rice around the filling to enclose.
- Roll the balls in the breadcrumbs and place on a parchment-lined baking sheet.
- Loosely cover and refrigerate, at least 1 hour or refrigerating overnight.
- Heat 1/2 inch vegetable oil in a large saucepan over medium heat until a deep-fry thermometer registers 350 degrees F.
- Working in batches, fry the rice balls, turning, until golden brown on all sides, about 4 minutes.
- Remove with a slotted spoon and drain on paper towels; season with salt.