Many of us wish we were something that we’re not, we wish we were taller, skinnier, more talented, smarter etc… Sometimes I wish I was Italian, I am in no way Italian, not even a bit. I am a Canadian from way back, so far in fact, the other stuff barely matters but to be specific, I am mostly Scandinavian and Irish which is probably the opposite of Italian. That’s okay though, I will take my blonde hair and blue eyes and still go ahead and show you how to make the best Arancini you’ve ever had.
If you’ve never had this before, Arancini is basically a risotto ball stuffed with whatever you like but usually sausage and cheese and served in beautiful marinara sauce. I have made this dish many times and it’s surprisingly easy, it’s one of those dishes that comes from a use for leftovers, in this case, leftover risotto. Please use my recipe for Buttery Leek Risotto as the base for your recipe
Make one batch of risotto which will make 10 arancini, each arancini is one meal, and trust me, they are filling (but delicious). For the rest of the ingredients you will need good stuffing ingredients, I suggest the following:
- Mozzarella cheese, shredded or cut into 1″ cubes
- Italian sausage hot or mild taken out of the casings
- Sundried tomatoes
- Cooked Spinach with garlic
After making the risotto, place it in a buttered dish and set aside to cool to room temp, then in the fridge for at least an hour.
Once you have your stuffings ready, you can start to make the Arancini, have a parchment lined baking sheet nearby for the finished balls.
Start with a scoop of rice and make a well.
Add cheese and sausage or whatever stuffings you’ve chosen and place them in the well.
Add approx. 1 tbsp of risotto on top and wet your other hand slightly with water (this will keep the risotto from sticking to your hand. Start to bring the risotto u the sides and begin to roll the ball in your hands like you’re making cookies until the stuffing is fully encased.
Continue to do this for the remaining rice, placing the finished balls on the parchment lined baking sheet. Place the balls into the freezer for at least 2 hours.
Set up a breading station consisting of flour, egg/milk and breadcrumbs
Start by placing one frozen Arancini in the flour and lightly coating it to make it dry, then cover it with the egg/milk mixture to make it wet, then into the breadcrumbs to make it dry again (dry, wet, dry). Place them back on the parchment lined baking sheet and repeat.
At this point you can freeze them for another day (great for dinner parties) or you can go ahaed and heat some vegetable oil over med/high heat to 350F, also pre heat your oven to 350F where you will finish the cooking. Once the oil comes to temp. add two to three Arancini at a time and fry until golden brown. Place back on the parchment lined baking sheet and once all of the Arancini’s are fried, place them in the oven until they reach an internal temperature of 165F.
Serve the Arancini in marinara sauce and garnish with parsley. Enjoy!