Tuesday, July 3, 2007

Risotto Balls with a Garlic Dipping Sauce

Last night I made spinach-shiitake risotto (one post down). I made more than usual so I'd have leftovers to make something I've always wanted to try - Risotto Balls. I had them for the first time at Stephen Starr's restaurant in Philadelphia, Washington Square. Ever since, I've looked for them on every restaurant menu.

Since this was my firs time making them, I expected them to come out a little soggy or in funny shapes, but they were perfect! They tasted great, even better than some we've had at restaurants. Once the risotto is made they are very easy to put together.

I took about 3/4 cup leftover risotto. It's best if it is a day old.

Take a small ice cream scooper and scoop out a small ball. Form it into a round ball, flatten it a bit, insert a mini mozzarella ball, then re-roll it into a ball. Roll it in flour to coat and set on a plate. Continue this until all of the balls have been rolled. I then put them in the fridge for about 20 minutes.

When you are ready to cook them, heat about 1/2 inch of light olive oil in a saute pan. Dip each ball in egg and then a bread crumb mixture. Place them into the hot oil and cook on each side for about 2-3 minutes, or until golden brown. Remove them with a slotted spoon and place on a paper towel so the extra grease is soaked up. They looked so perfect and crispy!

I made a dipping sauce to go along with them. I tweaked a recipe I got from Nestie bakingblonde on thenest.com. The original recipe called for thawed and drained frozen spinach, and did not call for sour cream. Here is my version:

- 3/4 cup mayonnaise
- 4 cloves garlic, pressed
- 1 green onion, chopped
- juice of 1/2 of a lemon
- 2 tbsp sour cream
- 1.5 tbsp olive oil

Heat the olive oil in a pan, add the garlic and cook til lightly browned. Set aside to cool. In the meantime, mix the mayo, sour cream, lemon juice, and green onions. Add the garlic/oil once cooled.

The sauce was really good with the risotto balls, and they also would have been good with a marinara sauce or on their own. I'm really happy with the way everything turned out, and I think I'm going to sneak off to the kitchen for leftovers!!

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  1. holy shiitake!! those look amazing! seriously, my mouth dropped open when i saw the pic. yummy!

  2. Those look wonderful! I have never had Risotto but I might need to try it just to try these!

  3. i love it! i am going to have to try this.

  4. Girl, those are some succulent looking balls. ;)

  5. These look so good! I wonder if they can be baked instead? They probably wouldnt be as good though...