Arancini ( Fried Rice Balls )

           This is a follow up to the Risotto recipe from the previous post.  My Sicilian mother always taught to me cook "as if a family of 5 walked in just as you sat down for dinner.  So, when those elusive family members or friends didn't show, there was leftovers.

           A big bowl of risotto isn't going to stay creamy and perfect for very long, but the next day (or two) you can turn it into another marvelous meal or snack, that will last a few more days.


  • Left over Risotto, chilled until ready to use (pictured is a spicy pepper risotto)
  • 4 cups vegetable oil for frying (olive oil is best, but this is less expensive) 
  • 3 eggs
  • 1 cup bread crumbs (I prefer the Seasoned bread crumbs for this recipe)
  • 1 Sausage link (cooked and chopped)
  • 1/8 cup cubed Fresh mozzarella cheese
  • Your favorite Tomato sauce to serve with finished product.
      Risotto recipe here

Total time: 30 minutes

Start by heating vegetable oil in a large, deep, heavy bottomed pot. Be sure the pot is filled less than 1/3 of the total to leave room for displacement, splatter, and safety.

While the oil is heating up, prepare two large bowls; one with the three eggs, whisked well, and the other with the bread crumbs.  I have used two serving bowls to best show of the process,  but I prefer to use metal mixing bowls for ease and less mess.

Have the sausage and mozzarella ready to use on separate plate.

Next, take a large meatball size portion of the risotto (about 4 oz) and roll it into a ball.  Push one finger into the center of the rice ball about halfway through, making a space to stuff with the filling.

Now fill the half of the empty space created with equal parts of sausage and mozzarella. Roll the ball again with your hands, closing up the space completely.  If you need to add a little more risotto to patch it up, that's fine.  Set aside and continue with the rest of the balls.

Once you have them all ready, it's time to bread them.  Roll each ball in the egg wash and coat thoroughly on all sides.  Let excess egg drain off and roll the ball in the bread crumbs. Cover the entire surface and set aside for frying.

When the oil is at temp, place three or four of the rice balls in the fryer for about 5 minutes total.  If they are completely submerged, they can be left alone to cook.  If they are not, you will need to rotate after 2-3 minutes to make sure all sides are cooked.

When done, place on plate with paper towel, or or cooling rack to drain.

Serve with a side of your favorite tomato sauce.

These can be refrigerated for several days as a wondrous Sicilian snack as well, so don't let the risotto efforts go to waste.


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