Eat with Me just posted a what looks to be a killer pumpkin risotto recipe. He serves it in little pumpkins! I feel like a bull in a china shop compared to that fabulousness.
While many may wax poetically about the luscious creaminess of risotto, my Vietnamese tastebuds find the texture to be unsettling. It's somewhere between your fluffy steamed rice and the fully wet congee. However, leftover risotto becomes the perfect base for a kicking croquette. I was inspired by Two Amy's whimsically named Suppli Di Telefono to make my own risotto balls. I used Nigella's lemon risotto recipe for the base and mozarella cheese as the cremay center and it worked out wonderfully. Being inspired by Eat with Me's recipe, I decided to make a fall version. Needless to say, it worked out wonderfully. This will be on my Thanksgiving table.
So make a double recipe of Eat with Me's pumpkin risotto. Serve half to your friends in little pumpkin bowls and save the other half for risotto balls the next night. Hopefully you will have about 3 cups of risotto.
The rest of the ingredients are:
12 (1/2-inch) cubes of a nutty Swiss cheese like Gruyere or Emmenthaler (about 1 oz total)
1 cup all-purpose flour
2 large eggs, lightly beaten
1 cup fine dry bread crumbs (not seasoned)
About 8 cups vegetable oil for frying
Roll chilled risotto into 12 (1 1/2-inch) balls using wet hands. Poke a small hole in center of each ball and insert a 1/2 inch cube of the Swiss cheese, then re-form into a ball.
Put flour, eggs, and bread crumbs in 3 separate bowls. Dredge 1 risotto ball in flour, shaking off excess. Dip in egg, letting excess drip off, then dredge in bread crumbs and transfer to a sheet of wax paper. Repeat with remaining balls.
Heat 1 1/2 to 2 inches oil in a 4- to 5-quart heavy pot. Working in batches of 4, lower rice balls into oil with a slotted spoon and fry, turning occasionally, until golden brown, 2 to 3 minutes per batch. Transfer with slotted spoon to paper towels to drain. Return oil to 360°F between batches. Let balls stand 2 minutes (for cheese to melt).
This can be fried ahead of time and then reheated in a 350 degree over for 10 minutes.