Parmesan and Mushroom Arancini with Taleggio Filling

Arancini, meaning “little oranges” because of their shape and colour, are fried, stuffed rice balls originating in Sicily.

They are a famous street food and, due to their popularity, widely available now in the UK from street vendors, Italian cafés and restaurants. Arancini are a clever way to turn leftover risotto into another culinary delight. These fried risotto balls make wonderful finger food – and not just for parties! They are a delicious and versatile little snack for on-the-go or for a lazy evening at home. Best enjoyed straight out of the oven while the Taleggio in the centre is still hot and gooey.

Ingredients:

For 15 arancini

For the risotto:

  • 200g risotto rice, e.g. arborio
  • 25g butter
  • 1 small onion
  • 125g chestnut mushrooms
  • 600ml vegetable, chicken or beef stock or broth (1 stock cube)
  • 100ml white wine, e.g. Pinot Grigio
  • 75g grated parmesan
  • Large handful of curly parsley, finely chopped
  • 1 clove of garlic
  • Salt, pepper to taste

For prepping the arancini:

  • 50 Taleggio, cut into 15 cubes
  • 2 small eggs
  • 5 tbsps. plain flour
  • 80g bread crumbs
  • Oil for frying

Instructions:

  1. Chop the onion and garlic. Slowly heat the saucepan and melt the butter. Sweat the onion and garlic for about 2 minutes. Finely chop the mushrooms and add to the pan.
  2. Add the uncooked rice to the saucepan and cook for 1-2 minutes. Stir several times to avoid any burning of the ingredients and rice sticking to the bottom of the pan. Add a dash of salt and pepper to taste.
  3. Add the white wine to the pan. Cook for another 2 minutes.
  4. Add stock to the rice bit by bit (pour from the measuring jug). If you are using stock cubes, boil water and dissolve 1 stock cube in 600 ml hot water. Keep adding more stock once the liquid has been absorbed by the rice. Stir regularly to avoid any burning of the rice.
  5. Finely chop the fresh parsley and add to the pan.
  6. The cooking process takes about 20-25 minutes Test the softness of the rice. It should be slightly al dente.
  7. Finely grate the Parmigiano-Reggiano and stir into the risotto and turn off the heat.
  8. Let the risotto cool off. In the meantime, prepare three bowls, one with a whisked egg (you can use a fork for that), one with the flour and one with the breadcrumbs. Cut the Taleggio into 15 equally sized cubes.
  9. Once the risotto is cold, take a small spoonful of it in the palm of your hand, put a piece of Taleggio in the middle and enclose the cheese with some more risotto. The size of the risotto ball is roughly that of an egg.
  10. Lightly dust the risotto ball in flour, then dip it into the egg, covering every surface, then use a fork to transfer it into the bowl with the breadcrumbs for coating.
  11. Place the risotto ball, on the baking tray. Repeat the process until the risotto is finished.
  12. Take a clean frying pan and add as much oil to it as to cover the entire surface, with roughly half a centimeter in depth.
  13. Pre-heat the oven to 170°C (fan) or Gas mark 4.
  14. Once the oil is hot, carefully place the arancini in the pan and deep-fry until golden brown. Remove the risotto balls with a slotted spoon and place them on a baking tray. Use kitchen towels to remove excess fat.
  15. Bake the arancini in the oven, middle rack, for about 15 minutes.
  16. Serve immediately.

Author: Danica Utermohlen
Picture credits: Danica Utermohlen

Disclaimer: This recipe has been edited. It was first published in February 2018 for GloTIME and Castelli, and republished in December 2020 (glotime.tv, castelli-uk.com).

One Comment Add yours

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s