Arancini makes such a great appetiser or party food – these ones are made with creamy Grana Padano Cheese and stuffed with Prosciutto di San Daniele!
This post was created in collaboration with Grana Padano and Prosciutto di San Daniele.
Risotto is one of those recipes I’ve come to love over the years. I used to think it was a bit bland, but at that point I guess I’d never had really good risotto.
Risotto made slowly, with love, and a glass of wine in hand.
You can do so much with it, adding spring vegetables, flaked salmon, piles of herbs. Or you can keep it elegant and simple – a mushroom risotto, finished off perfectly with a handful of grated Grana Padano and a squeeze of lemon.
I always overestimate how much rice I need, and I hate throwing leftovers away, so arancini (or risotto balls) makes the perfect next-day meal, that can taste even better than the original meal itself!
You can make the arancini balls ahead and fry them before serving. Or if you want to go a stage further when prepping, you can fry them, then reheat in the oven later.
I stuffed my arancini with Prosciutto di San Daniele, which adds a delicate meaty saltiness – making them very moreish indeed.
Did you know, Grana Padano and Prosciutto di San Daniele both hold PDO (Protected Designation of Origin) status?
Which means they’re protected from being copied, due to their origin and unique processing techniques. Having this logo:
means you can be assured of the quality of the product.
Click here for more info on Grana Padano.
Click here for more info on Prosciutto di San Daniele.
- For the Risotto (alternatively use leftover risotto, you'll need at least 4 cups of cooked risotto)
- 2tbsp olive oil
- 1 large brown onion, peeled and chopped finely
- 4 chestnut mushrooms, finely chopped
- 2 garlic cloves, peeled and crushed
- 300g/ (1⅓ cups) Arborio rice
- 150ml/ (2/3 cup minus 2 tbsp) white wine (optional, replace with stock if you'd prefer)
- 480ml (2 cups) vegetable stock
- 3 tbsp double (full fat) cream
- 50g/0.5 cups Grana Padano cheese, grated
- Juice of ½ a lemon
- Good pinch of salt and black pepper
- Remaining Arancini ingredients:
- 2 eggs, beaten
- 100g (2 cups) panko breadcrumbs
- 120g (1 cup) plain (all purpose) flour mixed with a pinch of salt and pepper
- 3 slices Prosciutto di San Daniele, each cut into 6 pieces
- Vegetable oil for deep frying
- Heat oil in a large pan, add the onion and cook for about 5 minutes until the onion starts to soften. Add in the mushrooms and garlic, stir and cook for a further minute.
- Add in the rice and stir until the oil has coated the rice. Add in the wine and stir. Wait for the wine to almost fully absorb (stirring regularly) and then add the stock a ladle at a time. Ensuring each ladle has almost fully absorbed before adding the next. Ensure you stir regularly. This should take for 15-20 mins. Once you've used up all the stock, have a taste of the rice. It should be soft, but still have a bit of a bite to it. If the rice is still far too hard, you can add in a ladle or so of hot water. When the rice is cooked, add in the cream, Grana Padano cheese, lemon juice and salt & pepper. Stir and then turn off the heat. Leave to cool in the pan, then cover with clingfilm and refrigerate for 30 minutes (or up to 2-3 days).
- When you're ready to make your arancini put the beaten eggs, breadcrumbs and flour on 3 large plates.
- Take the cold risotto out of the fridge and take a heaped tbsp of the rice in your hand. Flatten it out and then place a folded up piece of the sliced Prosciutto di San Daniele in the centre. Wrap the risotto around the Prosciutto di San Daniele and roll into a ball. Place the ball onto a plate and repeat until you've used all of the rice.
- Fill a large heavy-bottomed pan with the vegetable oil until it's about one-third full - the oil needs to be deep enough to cover the arancini. Heat the oil on high.
- Dip each arancini ball in turn into the flour, egg and finally the breadcrumbs, shaking off any excess as you go.
- Check the heat of the oil by dropping in a few of the panko breadcrumbs. If they immediately rise to the top and bubble vigorously, then the oil is ready. Turn it down to medium-high and carefully place in 4-6 arancini balls (depending on the size of your pan) in the oil. Cook for 2 minutes until the arancini are golden brown, then remove from the oil with a slotted spoon and place on a wire rack with some kitchen roll underneath to drain. Repeat until all of the arancini are cooked.
- Serve with a green salad and extra Prosciutto di San Daniele and a sprinkling of grated Grana Padano.