DeFalco's Italian Arancini (Rice Balls)
- 2 cups uncooked Arborio rice
- 1 egg yolk
- 1/2 cup grated Parmesan
- 1/4 cup unsalted butter, melted
- 1/3 pound ground beef
- 1 medium onion, chopped
- 1/2 cup frozen peas, thawed
- 1/2 cup tomato sauce, plus more for serving, optional
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- 1/4 teaspoon pepper
- 1/2 cup Italian Fontina cheese, shredded
- Oil, for deep-frying
- 1 1/2 cups seasoned bread crumbs
- 2 egg whites
- Fresh Italian flat-leaf parsley, for garnish
Cook the rice according to the package directions. I prefer to use a chicken stock to cook the rice, as it adds more flavor. Once cooked, cool slightly. Stir in the Parmesan, butter and egg yolk. Cover and refrigerate until cooled.
In a large skillet, cook the ground beef and onions over medium heat until the meat is no longer pink. Drain and transfer to a bowl. Stir in the peas, tomato sauce, salt and pepper. Let cool, then add the Fontina and mix together.
Shape the rice mixture into 11 patties. Place one heaping tablespoonful of meat filling in the center of each patty. Shape rice around filling, forming a ball.
Place the oil in a large pot, making sure not to fill pot more than halfway, to prevent spillage. Heat to about 375 degrees F.
Place the bread crumbs and egg whites in separate shallow bowls. Dip the rice balls in egg whites, then roll them in bread crumbs. Heat the oil on the stove to about 375 degrees. Be sure not to fill pot more than half way with oil, to prevent spillage. Fry the rice balls, a few at a time, until golden brown, 1 to 2 minutes per side. Remove from oil and drain on paper towels.
Serve hot plain, or with your favorite tomato sauce. Garnish with parsley.
This recipe was provided by a chef, restaurant or culinary professional and makes a large quantity. The Food Network Kitchens have not tested it for home use and therefore cannot make any representation as to the results.