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Mozzarella-Filled Rice (Risotto) Balls

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“A lovely starter or great finger food for a buffet. Makes a great meal served with garlic bread and salad. Definitely worth making for its own sake, but is also a great way to use up leftover risotto. This originally came from the Good Housekeeping Vegetarian book.”
12-16 balls

Ingredients Nutrition


  1. Begin by making a basic white risotto. Peel and finely chop the onion.
  2. Melt the butter in a saucepan, and fry the onion for 5 minutes.
  3. Pour in the white wine and boil rapidly until most of the liquid is gone.
  4. Add the rice, and stir to coat with the onion and wine.
  5. One ladle at a time, add the stock, and simmer until almost completely absorbed (keep an eye on this - it'll stick to the bottom of your pan like nobody's business!).
  6. Continue until the rice has been cooking for ~20 minutes and it is soft and creamy but still has a little bit of bite to it.
  7. Season generously (if you can't find fresh Basil then at this point stir in a healthy portion of dried Basil or Mixed Herbs) and add the parmesan.
  8. Stir in the beaten egg (If you're making a big batch and planning to eat some, then obviously do this after you've taken out tonight's meal!)
  9. Allow to cool completely (ideally overnight - but half an hour in the fridge should do it. It's just easier to handle when completely cold).
  10. Spoon 1tbsp of the risotto into the palm of your hand.
  11. Place a basil leaf and a piece of mozzarella - about half an inch across - on top of the rice.
  12. Add another spoon of risotto and shape into a smooth ball.
  13. Roll the ball in breadcrumbs until evenly covered.
  14. Heat a pan of oil (use the smallest pan you have available to minimise wastage) until it is smoking hot and then fry the balls, a few at a time, for 3-5 minutes until golden brown.

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