Wednesday, January 5, 2011

Arancini Con Ragu

This is not an Italian dish that I grew up eating or making. In fact, I had never heard of it until I met my husband, his Grandmother used to make them for him. A few years ago I asked him what he wanted to eat on his birthday. After a few moments of silence he blurts out - Arancini! I had never even had this before, let alone made it. Did I mention that this conversation happened on my cell while I was driving to Whole Foods? Anyway, at the time I had a handy dandy iPhone so when I pulled into my parking space I looked it up. The first recipe I came across was this one from epicurious. Sounded good, so I went with it. My husband could not have been more pleased as he ate these. I have made them several times since, usually around the holidays. I made several changes (as usual!) to this recipe. I have since found out there there are several different ways to make this. Some arancini are plain, some have just mozerella inside, some are with peas and mozzarella (which is how his Grandmother made them) and some (like the ones I made)  have ragu inside.

Continue reading after the jump...

Arancini Con Ragu
(Arancini with Ragu)

For the Rice:
  • 5 Cups of Homemade Chicken Broth
  • 2 Cups Arborio Rice
  • 2 Tablespoons of Butter
  • 1 Cup Romano Cheese
  • 1 Cup Parmesan Cheese
  • 4 Eggs
  • 1/2 Teaspoon Sea Salt (you could omit if your broth is salty, mine is not)
  • 1/4 Teaspoon Pepper
For the Ragu:
  • 1 Pound Beef
  • 1 Cup Mariniara Sauce
  • 1/2 Cup Peas (I used frozen petite)
To Coat Arancini:
  • 2 Cups of Breadcrumbs (I used homemade from leftover Spelt Buns)
  • 3 Eggs
  • 1/2 Teaspoon Sea Salt
  • 1/4 Teaspoon Pepper


We will start with the rice. Place stock into a pot. Bring up to a simmer, add the butter.

Turn up the heat to bring to a boil. Add the rice.

Return to a boil and then reduce heat to low. Cook uncovered about 12 minutes.


Transfer to a large bowl to cool.

Meanwhile, take the group beef place into a small pot or saucepan.


Add the peas (I used frozen).

Add the marinara.

Stir and bring to a simmer.

Reduce, reduce, reduce. You do not want this to be watery.

Place into a bowl and allow to cool.

To your cooled rice add the eggs.

Now the cheese.

Stir it up. Combine well.

Salt and Pepper.

Next I set up my stations. The rice, filling, eggs and breadcrumbs and something to keep the completed arancini until you are ready to fry.

 Using a 1/3 measuring cup as a guide get the rice.

Into the palm of your hand. Make a little well.

Scoop in the filling.

Work the rice around the filling, using more rice if needed. Traditionally these are round balls, but I find them quite hard to make that way. Mine are shaped differently and thats fine with me!

Next roll into the egg mixture.

And then the breadcrumbs.

Take finished product and set aside.

Continue until you are out of rice.

Place into a pan for frying. I am using coconut oil.

Turn when they start to brown.

Paper towels to drain.

All done! Serve with extra marinara and enjoy.

I submitted this recipe to Simple Lives Thursday, check it out for other great recipes from real food bloggers.

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  1. OMG I have never heard of this either but it looks AMAZING!!! Yum Yum!!

  2. They are really good. Labor intensive, but thats why I only make them once or twice a year!

  3. That looks really delicious, thanks for sharing the recipe.


  4. Wow Elizabeth, I've never heard of this before. it looks absolutely delicious! This is on my menu plan for next week!

  5. Diana - let me know how it turns out!

  6. Peas and mozzarella ones for me too please!
    Not really, I couldn't pass up on that ragu.


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