Tapas Bar & Arancini

I came back from France, full of cooking ideas , but for these recipes, you will have to wait a little as I am off on holidays for 3 weeks.
However it is not all play and no work. On my return from Lyon , a parcel was awaiting: a book to review for Bloggeraids: "Tapas Bar" by the Australian Women's Weekly.
First impression: this book is crammed with recipes and if you entertain a lot this is a book for you. Tapas, aperitifs, mezze, does not matter how you call them when it comes to prepare nibbles to serve with drinks, let's face it, it is more impressif to have a homemade snack rather than a packet of crisps.
The book is divided in 3:
Tapas straight from Spain with empanadas, little bites and others. Grilled mussels with prosciutto is one that I will definitly try.

Antipasto recipes from Italy. If you have ever wondered how to prepare capaccios, there are several recipes there.

Last but not least Mezze with all the wonders from around the meditteranne, brillant.
These easy snacks can also provide novel ideas for the lunch box. All the recipes are tested 3 times so there are no surprises.

Copied straight from the Australian Women's weekly Tapas Bar is one I chose for you, to give you an idea of how well devised are the recipes.

Cuisine type: Italian
Cooking time: Less than 60 minutes
Course: Entree

Ingredients :
2½ cups (625ml) salt-reduced chicken stock
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 small (80g) onion, chopped finely
1 clove garlic, crushed
½ cup (200g) arborio rice
½ cup (125ml) dry white wine
½ cup (60g) frozen peas
40g ham, chopped finely
½ cup (40g) finely grated parmesan cheese
100g mozzarella cheese
1 egg, beaten lightly
plain flour
1 egg, beaten lightly, extra
1 tablespoon milk
1 cup (100g) packaged dry breadcrumbs
vegetable oil, for deep-frying

NOTE: This recipe makes 18 arancini. Arancini, which means "little oranges" in Italian, make an excellent finger food or light lunch with salad. The risotto mixture can be made a day ahead. Arancini can be fried several hours ahead of serving and reheated in a slow oven.

Bring the stock to the boil in a medium pan. Reduce the heat to low and keep hot.

Heat the olive oil in a medium saucepan, add the onion and garlic; cook, stirring, until the onion is soft but not coloured. Add the rice; cook, stirring, for 2 minutes. Add the wine, then cook, stirring, until the liquid has evaporated.

Add about 1/3 cup (80ml) of the hot stock; cook, stirring, over a low-medium heat until the liquid is absorbed. Repeat until all the stock is used. Total cooking time will be about 25 minutes.

Stir in the peas, ham and salt and pepper to taste. Remove from the heat, stir in the parmesan cheese. Transfer the risotto to a bowl; cool.

Chop the mozzarella into 18 pieces.

Stir the egg into the risotto. Roll 2 level tablespoons of risotto into a ball; press a piece of mozzarella into the centre of each ball; roll to enclose. Toss balls in flour, shake away excess. Dip into the combined extra egg and milk, then coat in breadcrumbs.

Heat vegetable oil in a deep saucepan; deep-fry the arancini in batches until they are browned and heated through.

Drain on absorbent paper. Serve hot with lemon wedges, if desired.

Suitable to freeze. Not suitable to microwave.

Cook's note
Don't have the oil too hot as the arancini will burn before the cheese is melted inside. After deep-frying, they can be kept warm in a slow oven


Hopie said...

How exciting to have your book to review already! Sounds like a good one. I never would have thought of making anything like those arancini!

La Cuisine d'Helene said...

Sounds like a great book. Love the review.

Heather S-G said...

That sounds like a delicious book! I'd love to try your arancini :)

giz said...

Although I've never made arancini, I'm not so confused by the process and now really have to try it. Great job - now I have to buy the book - see what you've done :)

Solange Berchemin of Pebble Soup said...

Thank you all, Arancini are very exciting little snacks indeed, my only concern is that I am jetting off and won't be able to reply to all the comments.

Valerie Harrison (bellini) said...

I hope to see more of the recipes from this book..that just means you will need to entertain more and have more good times:D

Cakelaw said...

Beautiful - I have never made arancini.

Lori said...

Looks delicious. I have pulled up Womans Weekly to check it out. Thanks!



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