Stay for the leftovers: Arancini (Risotto Balls)

Arancini, or little oranges, are so named for their shaped and color.  I have another name for them, which may not be appropriate for this particular forum.

Risotto is one of my favorite, go to meals.  While a little time consuming to prepare, it’s a totally doable weeknight, one dish dinner.

The question with risotto has always been, what to do with the leftovers? It’s not an easy food to reheat, and if you bother, you’ll likely be rewarded with a lukewarm, goey mess.  Enter the arrancino.  (Honestly, sometimes I make risotto just so I can have these).

Start with leftover risotto, any flavor will suffice, here, we used left over baby Portobello mushroom risotto.  There are a lot of different recipes out there, but for once, I’ve taken the road of least resistance.

What you’ll need:

Left over risotto (at least a cup or more)

2 eggs

Worchester sauce

Panko (bread crumbs are ok too)

Mini mozzarella balls

Olive oil

Put a heavy skillet on low heat with about ¼ of an inch or less of olive oil.

Make an egg wash with two eggs, a little milk, a drizzle of Worchester sauce, salt and pepper.

Using your hands, take a small, small golf ball sized ball of the cold risotto and pack tightly.  Using your thumb, dig a little hole and drop in a mozzarella ball in.  Close it up, and pack tightly using both hands, making sure that the mozzarella is completely covered by rice.

Gently roll in the egg wash, and immediately roll in the bread crumbs or panko.  Repeat.

Once you have five or six, you can start pan frying them.  I used tongs, to gently turn them, though if you press too hard you’ll end up with little squares or tetrahedrons (or just misshapen, like mine).

Once they are golden brown on all sides, drain them on a paper towel and they are ready to enjoy.

You could in theory put any kind of cheese inside (like blue) that makes sense, or just skip that step.

The result is a deliciously crunchy exterior with warm, creamy (mushroomy) risotto, followed up a melty mozzarella center.  YUM!