Please understand that I would have built this somewhat differently if I had decided to plan out the ingredients. Instead, given the situation in the world today, I made this with what I had on hand rather than making a special shopping trip. These are the things parenthesis that follow the ingredients. Obviously, the substitutions didn't end in disaster: I wouldn't have posted this if it didn't work.
Now, for what led me to this. I wanted to make something from the rice besides just a bed of rice, and "rice balls" seemed like a good option. When I looked into Arancini, I realized that the first step was "make a risotto"! The "first step" was a recipe unto itself, so I set it aside while I tried to figure out an easier way. There were easier ways to do this (which I could not call an Arancini), but they weren't THAT much easier. So, this is what resulted.
i’m happy with my decision to redo the picture after pan frying. Of course, pan frying adds to the calories. But, the result is totally worth it. First, it looks more appetizing. Secondly, baking overcooked the interior, whereas here the interior was perfect.
The following recipe makes 8 Arancini.
For the risotto
2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
3 large garlic cloves, minced
1 tablespoon dried sage, minced
1/4 cup white wine (I used chardonnay)
4 ounces of mushrooms, sliced (I used cremini, which was exactly what I would have wanted)
1 cup Arborio rice (I used long grain white rice)
2 cups stock (I used turkey stock)
salt as needed
For the Arancini
1 egg, beaten
2 tablespoons flour
2 ounces mozzarella cut into small chunks (I used smoked Gouda)
2 tablespoons bacon grease
pizza sauce for serving (or make your own if desired)
1. Add 2 tablespoons of oil to a large pan and raise to medium heat. Add garlic and sage to the pan and stir constantly for about a minute. Add rice to the pan and stir thoroughly to coat. Heat until the rice becomes translucent, stirring constantly; about 3 minutes.
2. Add wine to the pan and stir in thoroughly. Stir constantly until the wine is evaporated. Stir in mushroom slices and heat until softened.
3. Add stock to the pan and stir to break up any clumps. Stir frequently until the stock is fully absorbed; about 15 minutes. Please note that the rice will be al dente at this point. That is intentional, since the baking in later steps will complete the cooking process.
4. Allow to cool completely. Blend the egg and flour into the risotto. Refrigerate mixture for about an hour.
5. Scoop some of the rice mixture into your hand. The mixture will be very sticky! Jam a cube of cheese in to the middle, then seal it. Roll into a ball. Roll in breadcrumbs. Place on baking sheet. Repeat for remaining rice mixture.
6. Raise a pan to medium heat, and add 2 tablespoons of bacon grease. Pan fry a few at a time, not overcrowding the pan. Flip over as needed to brown all sides of each Arancini.
NOTE: The following shows unbaked Arancini on a baking sheet. Do not bake these: you will regret it. They will be unappealing on the outside and over cooked on the inside. I love how the risotto turned out, but that takes away from it. Pan frying makes the flavors sing.
7. Serve warm with dipping sauce.
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