Fried Rice Balls

Leftovers worth loving don't always do well in the microwave. Fabio makes a classic Italian comfort food, his Arancini, a crispy-creamy, melt-in-your mouth delicacy that's a fun way to dress up leftover risotto.


  • Instead of trying to reheat leftovers in the microwave which ruins textures, think about your leftovers as an opportunity to create a new dish with its own elements, and add new textures.

  • Arancini is a great example of one Italian staple that's made by transforming another one. "Arancini "literally means "little oranges," a tribute to their size, thick skin, and golden hue.

Arancini (Easy Fried Risotto)

Recipe by Fabio Viviani

Yield: 6-12 pieces

NOTE: Whether you're using leftover Pancetta Risotto or making a fresh batch just so you can make Arancini, be sure to mix in up to one cup of grated Parmesan and up to two cups of green peas before spreading it on a sheet pan to cool.


1 batch Fabio's Pancetta Risotto, modified (see above) and refrigerated

light olive oil, for frying

extra virgin olive oil, for hands

6 eggs

pinch of salt

Panko breadcrumbs

Fabio's Marinara, heated

Parmesan cheese, grated

lemon zest, for garnish

fresh basil leaves, for garnish


Heat light olive oil in a deep sauté pan, over medium high heat.

Using an ice cream scoop, scoop and shape rice balls.

Beat eggs with a pinch of salt.

Coat your hands with a little extra virgin olive oil, to keep the rice from sticking.

Dip each ball into egg wash, and then roll them into Panko breadcrumbs to coat fully.

Pan-fry in oil until medium brown, turning to make sure they are browned on all sides.

Drain onto paper towels.

Serve on a bed of warm marinara, topped with grated parmesan and lemon zest, garnished with basil.