Summary: From Chef Michael Chiarello’s book Bottega
- 3 cups cooked arborio rice, cooled
- 1½ cups Blanched-Basil Pesto (Recipe is here; You will need to double the recipe.)
- 4 oz. fresh mozzarella, preferably bocconcini
- 2 cups all-purpose flour
- 3 large eggs, lightly beaten
- 2 cups panko (Japanese breadcrumbs)
- Peanut oil, corn oil or canola oil for frying
- Line a platter with parchment paper.
- In a large bowl, stir the rice and pesto together until blended. Divide the rice into 16 more-or-less-equal portions.
- Cut off about ½ teaspoon of mozzarella, and then, with your hands, ball up 1 serving of rice around the cheese so it’s completely encased in rice. Gently place on the prepared platter. Repeat to form 16 arancini.
- Slide the platter into the freezer for 30 minutes to allow the balls to firm.
- Before you take the rice balls from the freezer, set up your dredging station. Pour the flour into a shallow bowl, the eggs into another shallow bowl and the panko into a third shallow bowl.
- In a large, heavy pot or Dutch oven, heat 3 inches of oil over medium-high heat until it registers 375 degrees on a deep-fat thermometer.
- While the oil heats, dredge each rice ball in flour and lightly shake off the excess.
- Dip each rice ball in the egg and then in the panko. Gently drop 4 to 6 balls into the oil and cook until lightly browned, 60 to 90 seconds. Don’t overcook or the cheese will leak out into the oil.
- Using a slotted spoon or wire skimmer, transfer the arancini to paper towels to drain. Repeat to cook the remaining arancini. Serve at once.
Preparation time: 45 minute(s)
Cooking time: 25 minute(s)
Number of servings (yield): 4
Recipe and Photo courtesy of: SauceMagazine.com