Arancini Rice Balls with Ricotta Cheese

A traditional Sicilian snack, these mini rice balls are golden and delicious!
Makes 20 rice balls


2 cups leftover risotto rice
2 tablespoons fresh flat leaf parsley, chopped fine
½ cup ricotta cheese
2 tablespoons freshly grated Pecorino Romano cheese
All-purpose flour, for dredging
2 eggs, beaten
1 cup fine, dry breadcrumbs


In a medium sized bowl mix leftover risotto rice with fresh parsley. In a separate small bowl, combine ricotta and pecorino cheeses and set aside. Put 2 tablespoons of the rice mixture in your moistened palm and make a small indentation in the center of the mound and fill it with about 1 teaspoon of the ricotta mixture. Fold the rice around the filling to enclose it and pat the rice into an oval. Repeat with the remaining rice and ricotta.

In a medium saucepan, heat 2 inches of olive oil to 300°. Set a rack over a large baking sheet. Put the flour, eggs and bread crumbs in 3 shallow bowls. Dredge the rice balls in the flour, shaking off any excess, next dip in egg and then coat with the bread crumbs. Deep-fry 5 ovals at a time until golden brown, about 2 minutes. With a slotted spoon, transfer the rice balls onto paper towels to drain while you fry the rest. Serve hot or warm.