Arancini Risotto Balls with Wild Mushrooms

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Arancini Risotto Balls with Wild Mushrooms

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Arancini Risotto Balls with Wild Mushrooms. You can skip the rolling stage of this recipe and simply serve it as risotto, to serve 8 as a starter or 4 as a main course. Created by Andrew Rudd, his new book ‘Entertaining with Andrew Rudd’ is available at all major retailers nationwide.

Ingredients

  • For the risotto:
  • 15g dried mushrooms, porcini or similar
  • 120g butter
  • 400g Arborio risotto rice
  • 200ml white wine
  • 1 litre vegetable stock (or chicken, if preferred)
  • 1 onion (approx 150g), finely diced
  • 2 tbsp finely chopped fresh thyme
  • 80g Parmesan or white Cheddar cheese (or a mix is great)
  • salt and freshly cracked black pepper
  • Optional: ¼ tsp saffron
  • 150g peas, cooked
  • For the risotto ball coating:
  • 150g plain flour
  • 2 eggs, lightly beaten
  • 250g breadcrumbs
  • 2 litres vegetable or sunflower oil, for deep-frying.

Instructions

  1. Place the dried (porcini) mushrooms in a small bowl and just cover with 250ml of boiling water. Let them soak and soften for 15 minutes. Remove from the liquid, squeeze out the excess water and finely chop the mushrooms. Retain the liquid, as this lovely mushroom-flavoured stock is wonderful added in when you are cooking the rice.
  2. To make the risotto, melt 40g butter in a large heavy-based pan over a medium heat. Add the risotto rice and mix well to ensure that all the rice grains are coated with butter. Add the wine and stir until it has been absorbed by the rice. Add 100ml of the vegetable stock and stir gently. Once the vegetable stock has been absorbed, add 100ml of the mushroom stock. Continue adding the stocks like this until all of them have been absorbed and the rice is almost cooked. Add the saffron (if using). This will take 20–25 minutes. Remove from the heat. Add 60g of butter and stir well. You can serve the risotto just like this if you like.
  3. In a separate pan, add the remaining 20g butter and sauté the onion, thyme and mushrooms over a medium heat for 5 minutes. Season with salt and pepper. Then add the onion mixture into the risotto and stir well. Place the risotto back over a medium heat and continue cooking until the rice is fully cooked (about 5 minutes). Stir in the cheese and season with salt and pepper, as desired. Finally, add the cooked peas, if using. Remove from heat and leave to cool completely. Overnight is ideal.
  4. To make small risotto balls, gather an amount of cold risotto roughly the size of a table-tennis ball and work it into a ball using the palms of your hands. Go for a golf-ball-sized amount to make larger arancini. Then dip in flour, then egg, then breadcrumbs. Place on a tray or plate and transfer to the fridge to firm up for 30 minutes.
  5. Heat the oil in a large saucepan over a medium heat. (Alternatively you can use a deep fat fryer heated to 180°C). Deep-fry the balls, in batches, for 5 to 6 minutes or until golden brown. Transfer to kitchen paper to absorb any excess oil. Serve the arancini immediately.
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