I was watching the Barefoot Contessa the other day and she was making Chive Risotto Cakes. I remembered flagging this recipe a while back. It was in Ina Garten’s Back to Basics cookbook. They sounded great and looked even better!
1 cup uncooked Arborio rice
1/2 cup Greek yogurt
2 extra-large eggs
3 tablespoons minced fresh chives
1 1/2 cups grated Italian fontina cheese (5 ounces)
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
3/4 cup panko (Japanese dried bread flakes)
Good olive oil
Bring a large (4-quart) pot of water to a boil over medium-low heat and add 1/2 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 1/4 teaspoons of 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 F.
Spread the panko in a shallow dish. Heat 3 tablespoons of 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 3/4-inch thick. Place 4 to 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. Arrange on a serving platter and serve hot.
Is it a Keeper?
Well….if I were to make these again, there are number of things I would do differently. Here’s a list of changes I would make:
- I would use 1 egg instead of two — the mixture was too wet and didn’t hold their shape well
- I would put the Fontina in the freezer for 30 minute prior to grating it — it was rather soft and hard to grate
- I would make the rice mixture the day before and let it sit in the fridge overnight
- I would form the patties and coat them with Panko several hours before frying them
- I would add salt and pepper to the Panko crumbs — the cakes needed additional seasoning
With that being said, I’m not sure I would make these again. They were a lot of work and the “WOW” factor just wasn’t there. Don’t get me wrong, they were good, but I honestly don’t know if I’d make them again.
Have you tried this recipe by Ina Garten? Or, any of Ina Garten’s recipes? If so, what did you make and how did it turn out?
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