Italian Rice Balls
Arancini di Riso
Posted By Savita
Two things make’em perfect party appetizers – easy to find ingredients in pantry/refrigerator and recipe comes together very fast. In-fact perfect for make-ahead. Mix the ingredients, make balls, roll in crumbs and leave in refrigerator until you are ready to fry’em. For even cooking of these rice fritters, size is the key. Don’t roll too big in size, make’em 1-2 bite size. About 2 tbsp mixture in each yields 24 pieces or 4 tbsp in each yields 12 pieces. Do not go bigger than that.
For this version of arancini, I have used spinach, rice and parmesan cheese. I also spiced up these Italian fried rice appetizer with my favorite - crushed red pepper and Italian seasoning. These are not used in traditional recipe. But just for personal taste, I like a little kick of pepper in rice dishes. So, use of pepper is optional, but I recommend trying with pepper once to understand what magic it brings in the taste.
To me, pepper and Italian seasoning in arancini take'em to whole new level in taste. I would say - a little-spicy, aromatic and flavorful bite when dipped in warm marinara sauce. Scrumptious!!
Other than marinara, I love serving Arancini di Riso with Béchamel (white flour-butter sauce). I can eat a plate of these crispy little treats with just ketchup [Serve with ketchup only if not serving to your Italian boyfriend ;)]
Feeling good to share this easy appetizer recipe with you all. Check instruction for recipe details.
Italian Rice Balls
- 2 Cup Rice (cooked white or brown rice)
- 1/2 lbs Spinach (package frozen chopped, thawed and squeezed dry)
- 1 Cup Parmesan Cheese (grated)
- 1/2 tsp Salt (adjust to taste)
- 2 Cup Breadcrumbs (fine dry)
- Canola Oil (for deep frying)
- 1/2 tsp Red Pepper Flakes (or crushed red pepper)
- 1 tsp Italian Seasoning
- 2 Egg(s) (lightly beaten)
- Dip for Serving
- 10-12 Basil (basil leaves fried for garnish)
- 3/4 Cup Marinara Sauce (Or more per your liking)
1. In a large bowl combine eggs, rice, spinach, cheese, pepper, Italian Seasoning and salt.Additional Notes: Cover and chill (about 20-30 minutes) until slightly firm to hold shape better.2. Chilling the mixture makes it easy to shape and hold together well.
3. Shape rice mixture into 24 fritters (about 2 tbsp each) Or 12 fritters (4 tbsp each) like I did. Place breadcrumbs in a shallow dish. Roll rice fritters in breadcrumb mixture to coat. Pre-heat over to 300 F. In a heavy sauce pan or fryer heat 2 inches oil to 350 F. Fry rice fritters, a few at a time about 3-5 minutes each (until golden brown). Drain on paper towel. Keep warm in oven while frying the remaining arancini.4. Meanwhile in a small saucepan heat marinara sauce over medium heat until heated through. Serve Arancini di Riso with warm marinara sauce for dipping.
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