Recipe type: Snacks
Coated in golden crumbs, each risotto ball holds a treasure of gooey mozzarella - no wonder they're a favourite Italian snack.
- 1L (4 cups) chicken stock
- 1 tbs olive oil
- 1 brown onion, finely chopped
- 2 garlic cloves, crushed
- 330g (1½ cup) arborio rice
- 40g (1/2 cup) shredded parmesan
- 4 eggs
- 180g (2 cups) dried (packaged) breadcrumbs
- 150g (1 cup) plain flour
- 100g mozzarella, cut into 1.5cm pieces
- Vegetable oil, to deep-fry
- Tomato relish or chutney, to serve
- Bought marinated olives, to serve
- Bought marinated feta, to serve
- Step 1
- Place the stock in a medium saucepan over high heat and bring just to the boil. Cover and reduce heat to low. Hold at a gentle simmer.
- Step 2
- Meanwhile, heat the oil in a large saucepan over medium heat. Add the onion and garlic and cook, covered, stirring occasionally, for 5 minutes or until the onion is soft.
- Step 3
- Add the rice to the onion mixture and cook, stirring, until the grains appear slightly glassy. Add a ladleful (about 125ml/1/2 cup) of the simmering stock to the rice mixture and stir constantly with a wooden spoon until the liquid is completely absorbed. Continue to add the stock, 1 ladleful at a time, stirring constantly and allowing the liquid to be absorbed before adding the next ladleful, for 20 minutes or until the rice is tender yet firm to the bite and the risotto is creamy. Stir in the parmesan. Set aside for 2-3 hours to cool completely. Add 2 eggs and stir until well combined.
- Step 4
- Place the breadcrumbs on a large plate. Place the flour in a bowl. Crack the remaining eggs into a separate bowl and use a fork to lightly whisk. Use wet hands to shape 2 tablespoons of the risotto mixture into a ball. Press your thumbs into the centre of the ball to make an indent. Place a piece of mozzarella in the indent, then mould the risotto mixture around the mozzarella to enclose. Repeat with the remaining risotto mixture and mozzarella to make 28 balls.
- Step 5
- Roll the risotto balls in the flour and shake off any excess. Dip in the egg, then in the breadcrumbs, pressing to coat. Place on a large plate. Place in the fridge for 30 minutes to chill.
- Step 6
- Add enough oil in a large saucepan to reach a depth of 5cm. Heat to 190°C over medium-high heat (when the oil is ready a cube of bread will turn golden in 10 seconds). Add 7 risotto balls to the oil and cook, turning occasionally, for 4-5 minutes or until golden. Use a slotted spoon to transfer to a plate lined with paper towel. Repeat, in 3 more batches, with the remaining risotto balls, reheating the oil between batches.
- Step 7
- Place the risotto balls on a serving plate and serve with tomato chutney and marinated olives and feta.