Wish Upon A Dish: Rice Balls aka "Zuccacini"

June 17, 2010

Rice Balls aka "Zuccacini"

In Italy they stuff rice balls many different ways. I choose to add roasted butternut squash to the rice before forming and frying. Just adds an extra healthiness to what can be a no so healthy dish.


The rice balls are GB&D. It's hard to make a rice ball look good enough for it's camera debut.


* 3/4 cup short grain brown rice or Orborio rice
* 1/2 cup diced butternut squash
* 2 tbls both unsalted butter and EVOO
* 3 cups simmering chicken broth with 1/2 tsp saffron in it
* 1/2 cup sweet onion, dices
* 1/2 cup red wine
* 3 tbls butter + 1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese for the end

1. In heavy saucepan, heat oils.
2. Add onions and saute till translucent.
3. Add rice to toast.
4. Add butternut squash and saute for 3 minutes.
5. Add wine to evaporate.
6. Add 2 cups chicken broth and cover, lower heat and simmer 30 minutes.
7. Add the last 1 cup and simmer uncovered until liquid is almost all gone.
8. Add butter and stir in, then 1/2 cup grated cheese (heat off).
9. Put in container into fridge over night.


* Canola oil for frying.
* 1/2 cup matzo meal & bread crumbs
* 2 slices fresh mozzarella, 1/2" dice
* 1 egg, beaten
* 1/2 cup grated cheese
* 3 tbls flour
* Salt & Pepper to taste

1. Heat oil to 350-375F.
2. Add beaten egg, flour and 1/2 cup grated cheese to risotto.
3. Mound 1 heaping tablespoon rice into palm of your hand. Make an indent in the middle.
3. Push piece of mozzarella into indent and work the rice to cover. Roll in hands to form a ball.
4. Roll into mixture of matzo & bread crumbs and put on a sheet pan until all is done.
5. Fry for 4 minutes until golden brown & delicious.
6. Drain on cooling rack (not paper towels).
7. Serve with marinara sauce or you can also serve with a bechamel sauce.

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