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Chive Risotto Cakes

  It’s been a very risotto-y couple of weeks…first with the Abrorio rice pudding last week and now with the Barefoot Contessa’s Chive Risotto Cakes which were selected by Deb of Kahakai Kitchenas one of this month’s bonus recipes for Barefoot Bloggers.

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This is a good recipe to prepare partially ahead of time since the risotto and cheese mixture needs to chill for a few hours to firm up. I left mine in the fridge for about 8 hours before forming it into patties and covering them with panko and frying them up. They were still a bit fragile so I very delicately placed them in the skillet and was careful when I flipped them.

I served them with some garlic & balsamic broiled steak & onions and a simple salad. The entire meal was a hit. The risotto cakes were full of cheesey goodness. They were a great option for a starchy side to go with dinner instead of standard rice or potatoes. I will definitely make these again. They would also be great as a brunch dish.

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Chive Risotto Cakes  (Barefoot Contessa Back to Basics, page 174-175) Serves 6

” I used to have to wait until I made risotto in order to make risotto cakes from the leftovers. So I decided to do a recipe for risotto cakes that I make from scratch. Most of this can be assembled early in the day and then sautéed just before dinner. The yogurt, chives, and Italian Fontina give these a delicious creamy interior, and the panko gives them a wonderful crunchy crust.”

  • Kosher salt
  • 1 cup uncooked Arborio rice
  • ½ cup Greek yogurt
  • 2 extra-large eggs
  • 3 tablespoons minced fresh chives
  • 1 ½ cup cups grated Italian Fontina cheese (5 ounces)
  • ½ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • ¾ cup panko (Japanese dried bread flakes)
  • Good olive oil

Bring a large (4 quart) pot of water to a boil and add ½ tablespoon salt and the Arborio rice. Cook, stirring occasionally, for 20 minutes. The grains of rice will be quite soft. Drain the rice in a sieve and run under cold water until cool. Drain well.

Meanwhile, whisk together the yogurt, eggs, chives, Fontina, 1 ¼ teaspoons salt, and the pepper in a medium bowl. Add the cooled rice and mix well. Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate for 2 hours or overnight, until firm.

When ready to cook, preheat the oven to 250 degrees.

Spread the panko in a shallow dish. Heat 3 tablespoons olive oil in a large skillet over medium-low heat. Form balls of the rice mixture using a standard (2 1/4 –inch) ice cream scoop or a large spoon. Pat the balls into patties 3 inches in diameter and ¾ inch thick. Place 4-6 patties in the panko, turning once to coat. Place the patties in the hot oil and cook, turning once, for about 3 minutes on each side until the risotto cakes are crisp and nicely browned. Place on a sheet pan lined with parchment paper and keep warm in the oven for up to 30 minutes. Continue cooking in batches, adding oil as necessary, until all the cakes are fried. Serve hot.

Note from Ina: “Panko, or Japanese bread flakes, have a crisper, lighter texture than regular bread crumbs.”

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