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Arancini di Riso ( Crispy Risotto Balls) with Marinara Sauce

A bite-sized blend of Italian cheeses and rice, lightly fried and served with the versatile Marinara Sauce with a delicious fresh taste.

Preparation Time: 45 minutes

Cooking Time: 15 minutes

Serving: 12 Crispy Risotto bites.

Ingredients and Quantity:

For Risotto:

Arborio rice-01 cup

Dry white wine- ½ cup.

Vegetable broth-2 ½ cups

Olive oil-02 tablespoons

Onion, finely chopped-01no.

Mushrooms, finely chopped-1 cup

Garlic cloves, minced-03 nos.

Dried parsley flakes-02 tablespoons

Salt and pepper to taste.

For filling in the Risotto Rice balls-Mozzarella, cut into 1/2 cubes-12 nos.

For the Breading:

Crackers crumbled /bread crumbs-1/2 cup (preferably crackers to make the Risotto bites crispier).

Garlic powder-1/4 tsp

Parsley-1 tsp

Oregano-1/2 tsp

Dash of salt and pepper

Vegetable oil for frying – 500 ml. /as required


In a small saucepan, heat the vegetable stock over medium flame (do not bring it to a boil). Keep it on the heat while you make the risotto in a separate pan.

Heat the oil in a medium sauce pan over low-medium heat.

Add the onion and garlic, cook for about 3 minutes.

Add the mushrooms; continue cooking for another 4 minutes.

Add the rice, cook about a minute, stirring.

Add ½ cup of the dry white wine into the rice. Cook, stirring, until nearly all of it is absorbed.

Add another 1 ½ cup of vegetable stock, and keep stirring until that liquid is completely absorbed.

Add the final cup of vegetable stock, and stir until all the liquid is absorbed.

Add the parsley, salt, and pepper and stir.

Put the risotto aside for about 30 minutes until it is cool enough to handle.

Mix your breading ingredients in a shallow bowl.

Prepare another shallow bowl with some water.

Add the vegetable oil to a frying pan and heat over medium (make sure the oil is definitely hot before you begin).

Dip fingers in water and shape risotto into a (1 1/2-inch) ball around a cube of mozzarella. Roll in palm of hands to make a smooth ball.

Ball up about 1/4 cup of the risotto and coat with the breading.

Fry in the oil, turning every so often so that each side becomes golden brown. This should take about 5 minutes.

When they’re done, lay the bites on a paper towel to absorb the excess oil.

Repeat the procedure, until all the risotto is used.

Serve hot with marinara sauce.

Chef Tips:

  1. After rolling the Risotto balls, you may chill in the refrigerator as it gives them a firmer texture, and then fry them.
  2. Time saving tip: Make the risotto a day ahead of time and keep it the fridge until ready to use and all you’ll need to do the day of is to fry them when required.

Marinara Sauce

Preparation Time: 10 minutes

Cooking Time: 01 hour 20 minutes

Servings: 04 Cups

Ingredients and Quantity:

Extra Virgin Olive Oil- ½ cup

Onion Very finely chopped- 01 no small

Garlic, finely chopped- 02 cloves

Celery stalk, finely chopped- 01 no.

Carrots, finely chopped-01 medium sized.

Good red wine, such as Chianti-1/2 cup
Tomatoes, crushed- 01 can

Bay leaves- 02 nos.

Sea salt- ½ tsp.

Freshly ground pepper- ½ tsp.


  1. In a large sauce pan, heat the oil over medium heat.
  2. Add the onions and garlic and sauté until the onions are translucent, about 10 minutes.
  3. Add the celery, carrots, salt and pepper.
  4. Sauté until the vegetables are soft, about 10 minutes.
  5. Add the red wine, cook on high heat.
  6. Add the tomatoes and bay leaves, and simmer uncovered over low heat until the sauce thickens, for about an hour.
  7. Remove and discard the bay leaves.
  8. Season the sauce with more salt and pepper to taste, if required.

Chef Tips: Time saving tip: You may make the sauce one day in advance, and rewarm on a slow heat and use as required.


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