From the early ages of childhood I have been a HUGE lover of cheese.
Grilled Cheese Sandwich……..I could go on and on with this list of my favorite cheese dishes. It goes in food, it goes on top of food and it just makes it taste better.
When Sargento Cheese contacted me about trying out their cheese products, I didn’t even need to try their cheese out because I was already a huge fan of their products. I quickly replied with a yes and was thrilled with the idea of creating a recipe using their products. Shaun and I have been talking for a while about making risotto balls ever since we tried some from Omaha Steaks.
Sargento offers an array of shredded cheeses, wedges, sliced, string, and cubed products. You can even pick from many types of cheeses like Parmesan, Mozzarella, Provolone, Colby Jack and the list can go on and on. We love to have numerous cheese options on hand in our frig for any type of recipe we are doing or just to make a good sandwich with sliced cheese. Sargento cheese products can be found at most local grocery stores.
Now that we have perfected making risotto I knew that this would be a fun recipe to make. The hardest decision was what type of cheese were we going to use with the balls. I decided to take the traditional route with mozzarella cheese but add a twist by using provolone as well.
I used grated Parmesan cheese with bread crumbs for the outside of the cheesy risotto balls. Why not add more cheese……The cheesier the better!
These delicious risotto balls will go perfect as an appetizer or as a side dish.
Cheesy Risotto Balls
FOR THE RISOTTO
1 Tbsp butter
1/2 cup onions, diced
1 cup arancini rice
3 cups chicken broth
1/2 poblano pepper, diced
1 cup mozzarella and provolone cheese,, shredded
salt and pepper to taste
FOR THE BREADING
1 cup flour
1 cup bread crumbs
3/4 cup parmesan cheese, grated
2 eggs, beaten
1/2 tsp italian seasoning
1/4 tsp salt
Melt the butter in a large skillet or pot on low/medium heat. Add the onions and saute for 5 minutes. Then pour in the rice and stir for 3 minutes.
Pour in 1 cup of chicken broth. Stir the mixture every couple of minutes. When chicken broth is absorbed add another cup until all three cups have been used. Stir in the poblano pepper, salt and pepper then taste to see if risotto is done. Total cook time for risotto will be 35-40 minutes or until tender.
Remove the risotto from the heat and let it cool for 10 minutes. Then pour into a casserole dish or baking sheet and place in refrigerator for at least 2 hours.
Remove from refrigerator and make balls with cookie scoop or spoon. Wet your hands and place your thumb in the middle of the ball and stuff with mozzarella and provolone cheese. Close the opening up and roll back into a ball shape. (It's ok if some of the cheese is poking through the center of the ball)
In a small bowl add bread crumbs, italian seasoning, parmesan cheese and salt. Grab two more bowls/dishes: one for eggs and one for the flour.
Roll the risotto ball in the following order: flour, egg and then bread crumb mixture. Place back on baking sheet and put back in refrigerator for 30 minutes.
While they are in the refrigerator heat up a large pot or dutch oven with canola oil. You will want to use enough oil to at least cover 1/2 of the risotto ball. The oil needs to reach 325degrees.
Drop 3-4 risotto balls into the oil at a time cooking 2-3 minutes on each side or until golden brown. Remove and sprinkle with salt.
Serve risotto balls warm with marinara sauce on the side.
This post is sponsored by Sargento. The opinions are completely my own based on my experience.