Mushroom arancini with French onion hearts
Arancini, are stuffed rice balls which are coated with breadcrumbs and fried. They are said to have originated in Sicily in the 10th century during Kalbid rule. Arancini are usually filled with ragù, tomato sauce, mozzarella, and or peas, but ours are a little different, and we think, a little better. You be the judge!
- 1l (4 cups) chicken, vegetable or mushroom stock
- 3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
- 1 small red onion finely diced
- 1 large clove garlic crushed
- 10 button mushrooms finely diced
- 1½ cups arborio risotto rice
- 50g grated Parmesan
- 25g butter
- 1 egg
- ½ cup finely chopped flat leaf parsley
- 2 200g tubs of Chris’ French onion Dip
- salt & freshly ground black pepper
To crumb and fry
- 2 eggs, beaten
- 2 cups fine breadcrumbs
- vegetable or sunflower oil for frying
- freshly grated Parmesan for serving (optional)
You will also need a medium size piping bag and plain nozzle
To make the risotto
Bring the stock to the boil in a medium saucepan. Reduce the heat to a gentle simmer. Meanwhile, heat the extra virgin olive oil in a large, heavy-based non-stick saucepan over medium heat. Add the onion and mushrooms and cook, stirring until they soften. Add the garlic and cook for 1-2 more minutes till fragrant then pour in the rice and stir for 1 minute or until the grains are lightly coated with oil.
Add about 1 ladle of simmering stock to the rice mixture and stir gently with a wooden spoon until the liquid is completely absorbed. Continue to add the stock, a ladle at a time, stirring constantly. Allowing the stock to be absorbed before adding more. Cook for around 20 minutes or until rice is tender and risotto is creamy. At the end of the cooking process remove from the heat and stir in the parsley, Parmesan and butter. Taste and season with salt and pepper. Transfer to a heatproof bowl cover and place in the fridge to cool.
To make the arancini,
Place Chris’ French onion dip in a piping bag with a plain nozzle. Beat an egg into the cold risotto and mix through vigorously. Take about a tablespoon of risotto and roll into a ball in your hands. Poke the piping bag nozzle into the center, pipe in a little Chris’ French onion dip, and close up the hole. Roll each ball in beaten egg, then in breadcrumbs. Heat the oil until it turns a small cube of bread golden brown in about 30 seconds. Fry the arancini in small batches for 4 minutes to 5 minutes or until golden. Drain and serve with a little extra grated Parmesan and more Chris French onion dip as a dipping sauce.
Makes 10 large arancici or 20 small ones.
Tip: If you want an even more luscious version of this recipe, substitute some of the mushrooms for porcini mushrooms and add snipped chervil as well as parsley.