Traditional Italian arancini are savory, made with leftover risotto. We ate all our (very non-traditional) Risotto already, but we did have some leftover Rice Pudding in the fridge. Which, as it turns out, has a very similar texture to day-old risotto, score! We glanced around the test kitchen for inspiration, Naural Oak Wood Extract? Not quite right. Peach Swirl? Intriguing, maybe once the weather warms up a spiced peach might be nice. Mexican Coffee Liqueur Type Syrup! Now that would go brilliantly with the horchata flavors of our rice pudding. And that, friends, is how this recipe came to be.
If you're looking for a special occasion to break out the fry thermometer, we think Valentine's Day is an excellent time for chocolate-dipped things and these bite-sized treats are perfect for sharing with your special someone!
We'll start our Horchata Arancini with Mexican Coffee Dipping Sauce with leftover Rice Pudding!
Three bowls of destiny! Or flour, lightly beaten eggs, and crispety crunchety panko.
flour clings so tightly / to the gooey rice pudding balls / fingers are sticky
From flour to egg to panko, the journey from rice pudding to arancini is meditative. Continue your deep breathing as you bread each one.
There, all done! While our arancini rest in the fridge and our oil comes up to temperature, let's whisk up that luscious dipping sauce.
Three simple ingredients make up our Mexican Coffee Dipping Sauce. Simple, but delicious!
Warmed cream and melted chocolate are whisked together until smooth; this won't be instantaneous, give them a moment to come together in perfect harmony.
A generous dose of our Mexican Coffee Liqueur Type Syrup brings a wonderful depth to our sauce. Give it another whisk and decant into a lovely vessel for serving, it can hang out at room temperature while we fry up the arancini.
Ah yes, now that our oil is a balmy 350℉ we're ready to fry! Add just a few at a time, both to prevent a single mass of arancini (sadness) or dropping our oil temp too much (which would increase our fry time and might make our arancini greasy).
golden perfection / arancini are a treat / sharing, ov'rrated
Place them on paper towels to drain slightly while the rest are frying. A fork will keep your fingers clean but we won't tell anyone if you jump right in there with your bare hands!
Here's the full recipe!
MEXICAN COFFEE DIPPING SAUCE
- 1 cup leftover Rice Pudding
- ½ cup all purpose flour
- 3 large eggs, lightly beaten
- 1 cup panko
- oil, for frying (grapeseed, peanut, and soybean oils are best)
- deep fry thermometer
- spider or slotted spoon
- sheet pan lined with paper towels
MEXICAN COFFEE DIPPING SAUCE
- Portion rice pudding into bite-size portions and roll into balls.
- Toss in flour, gently shaking off excess. Plop into eggs, fully coat. Finally, place in panko and coat evenly.
- Once all balls are battered, refrigerate for about 30 minutes to firm up.
- Meanwhile, heat oil to 350℉ in a deep pot.
- Drop a few arancini balls at a time into the oil and fry until panko is a lovely golden brown.
- Serve hot along with Mexican Coffee Dipping Sauce.
- Melt chocolate over a double boiler.
- Slowly whisk in cream and Mexican Coffee Liqueur Type Syrup.
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