I’d never even thought of making something like this until I saw the recipe for these Chive Risotto Cakes in Ina Garten’s Barefoot Contessa Back to Basics cookbook. I love risotto. I love anything with the name “cakes” in the title. And I love Ina Garten. There was no way this wasn’t going to be something I loved, and it wasn’t. These are fantastic!
I, of course, made a meal out of a couple of them, but wouldn’t they be a great appetizer or a side dish? I love the creaminess the Fontina cheese brings to these little darlings. It goes so well with the chives and the yogurt, believe it or not. If you like risotto, you’re gonna absolutely love the heck out of these.
How’s that for simple ingredients? All you need is some Greek yogurt, 2 extra large eggs, 1 1/2 cups of grated Fontina cheese, a cup of Arborio rice, a little bit of chopped chives, 3/4 cup of panko, salt, pepper and some olive oil. (The entire recipe is printed below) I love when something so wonderful comes from such simple ingredients.
To make Ina’s Chive Risotto Cakes, the first thing I did was make the rice. Very simple: just bring a large pot of water to boil, add 1/2 tablespoon of salt and the Arborio rice. Let it cook for about 20 minutes, stirring occasionally. It will be soft when it’s done.
Then it was time to wait. I covered everything with plastic cling wrap and let it chill in the refrigerator for two hours. You can let it chill overnight if you’d like. The idea is to have a firm mixture after chilling….
….because next it’s time to form little 3 inch patties, each about 3/4 of an inch thick. I put the panko bread crumbs in a shallow plate and put the patties on top of it. I turned them once, so the panko coated both sides of the patties.
With 3 tablespoons of olive oil heated in my large skillet it was time to fry ‘em up! They looked so good. The problem was, the pan wasn’t hot enough. The recipe said to cook them over medium-low heat. That didn’t work for me. I had to kick the heat up to medium-high before the cakes started browning the way they were supposed to. Remember, I have a 20 year old Jenn Air electric stove top, so don’t assume you’ll have the same problem, but I wanted to mention it anyway.
It took about 5 minutes on each side for me to get this:
In other news, I really shouldn’t write cooking blog posts when I’m hungry….
Enjoy them if you try them and have a wonderful Wednesday!
Chive Risotto Cakes Recipe
Adapted from a recipe by Ina Garten in her cookbook, Barefoot Contessa, Back to Basics
Print the original recipe at The Food Network
- Kosher salt
- 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 (we used the 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.