Arancini rice balls or Arancine are a typical specialty of Sicilian cuisine!
A delicious street food loved all over the world!
They are small rice timbales, round in shape or with a cone-shaped tip, filled with meat sauce with peas and stringy caciocavallo cheese; breaded and then fried!
The main feature of Arancini rice is a crunchy crust that hides a soft and tasty heart, which for golden color and shape, resembles an orange, hence the name “arancine”!
Makes: 20 arancini
- 2 cups arborio rice
- 5 cups water
- 1 tsp saffron dissolved in 1/12 tbsp water
- 1/8 cup of butter
- 1 cup grated parmigiano reggiano cheese
- salt to tasteFILLING:
- 1 medium sized onion cut into small cubes
- 1 small carrot cut into small cubes
- 1 stick celery cut into small cubes
- 1 tbsp olive oil or butter
- 3 1/2 oz minced meat
- 3/4 cup tomato sauce
- 3/4 cup fresh or boiled peas
- 1/4 cup of fresh mozzarella cut into cubes (or caciocavallo cheese)
- salt and black pepper to tasteBATTER:
- 1/2 cup of all purpose flour
- 1/2 cup of water
- salt to tasteCOATING:
- bread crumbs as needed
- oil for frying as needed
Prepare the rice, boil the rice with salted water until. Cook until the rise is tender and the water is fully absorbed.Add the butter and the saffron dissolved in water. Also add the grated cheese, mix well.Spread the mixture onto a tray or dish lined with greaseproof paper. Cover with a plastic wrap and let cool.Prepare the filling, Saute the onions, carrots and celery until soft and tender.Add the mince until the meat changes colour and is no longer pink.Add the tomato sauce followed by the salt and pepper to taste.Add the peas, cover and cook for a few more minutes. Until no more liquid remains in the filling. It should be thick and compact.Shape the arancini, Take the rice mixture into the palm of your hand, make a shell by pressing in the center. Place the meat filling and the mozzarella cubes into the rice shell.Form into a ball and then make a conical shape at the top.Prepare the batter, combine the flour, salt and water. Whisk to form a smooth batter. Make sure to remove all lumps from the flour. Roll into the batter.Roll into the breadcrumbs.Fry arancini in medium hot oil in batches of two at a time. Fry until golden brown and place on a paper towel to drain excess oil before serving.