Black Olive Risotto Balls

Weekly Recipe: 

2 tablespoons butter

3 cloves garlic, minced

2 medium shallots, chopped

1 cup Arborio or short grain rice

1 container (32 oz) chicken stock, warmed

1/2 cup sauvignon blanc

2/3 cup shredded mozzarella cheese

1 1/3 cups freshly grated Parmigiano-Reggiano, divided

1/4 cup minced sun-dried tomatoes (preferably smoked)

3 tablespoons chopped fresh basil

1 can (2.2 oz) sliced California ripe olives, drained and coarsely chopped

Freshly ground pepper to taste

1 cup panko breadcrumbs

1/2 cup flour

2 eggs, beaten

Olive oil cooking spray

Melt butter in a large skillet. Add garlic and shallots: cook over medium heat for five minutes. Stir in rice and cook for two minutes more. Add chicken stock, 1/2 cup at a time, adding more when broth has been absorbed, stirring frequently. When all broth has been used, stir in mozzarella, 1/3 cup Parmigiano-Reggiano, sun-dried tomatoes, basil, olives, and pepper. Let cool, then cover and chill for at least one hour or until firm.

Roll mixture into 1 1/2-inch balls. Stir together breadcrumbs and remaining Parmigiano-Reggiano. Roll each ball in flour, then in beaten egg, then in breadcrumb mixture. Let stand for 30 minutes. Preheat oven to 375 degrees.

Place risotto balls on a baking sheet and spray liberally on all sides with olive oil cooking spray. Bake for 30 minutes or until golden brown, coating with olive oil spray every 10 minutes. Recipe and image courtesy of the California Olive Committee.