Baking Cooking Food General Recipes

Baked Mushroom Arancini (Baked Risotto)

Risotto is one of my favourite Italian dishes. The only problem with it is that while it tastes great right off the stove, it doesn’t re-heat well. As a result, until recently, I’d usually make up a big pot of the stuff, and then be left with a lot of cold risotto that tastes sub-par when reheated in the microwave. Alternatively, I’d make just a little, and then have to cook something from scratch for my next meal.

That is, this used to be my problem with making risotto, until I tried some arancini (fried risotto balls) at a restaurant. While eating the arancini, I had an epiphany, and now I have a whole new risotto-system 🙂 Now, I make up a pot of risotto, eat it fresh off the stove for a meal, and then use the left over risotto to make arancini. I basically roll the left-over risotto into balls, which I refrigerate, and then bake them (instead of frying them because it’s healthier and easier) whenever I am ready for my next meal.

And just like that, I have a delicious, hot meal in a few minutes!

Baked Risotto

If you’d like to try making some, here’s the recipe for the arancini part of the process. For my risotto recipe, go here. There are also plenty of recipes out there on the great Internets. For instance, you could try Jamie Oliver’s mushroom risotto, the recipe can be found here. (I’d skip the celery part of the recipe, though, if I were you, (yuck!))


1 pot of risotto (Whichever recipe you use, make sure to chop the mushrooms into fairly small pieces, rather than slicing them. if the mushroom slices are too large, it becomes difficult to shape the risotto into balls for the arancini)

1 cup (approx.) panko crust

3-4 egg whites

1 cup (approx.) flour

Goat cheese or mozzarella to taste for the arancini filling (optional)


Cool the risotto in the fridge for at least a few hours. Once you’re ready to shape the risotto into balls, place three bowls and a baking sheet lined with parchment paper on the counter, table, or wherever you are going to be working. Put the panko crust in one bowl, egg whites in another bowl, and flour in the third.

Using an ice cream scoop, portion some risotto into your hands and shape it into a sphere, about the size of a tennis ball. (If you’d like to make arancini with goat cheese or mozzarella centers, flatten a scoop of risotto in your palm, place the cheese at the centre of the flattened risotto, and then wrap the risotto around the cheese). Now, roll the ball in the flour and place it on the baking sheet. Repeat this process until all the risotto is used up.

Next, dip each flour-coated ball into the egg white, immediately roll it in the panko crust, and then place it on the baking tray.

Baked Risotto

Once you’re done coating all the balls, you can bake them immediately, or you can store them in Tupperware, and bake them when you’re ready to eat them.

To bake the arancini, pre-heat the oven to 400 degrees Fahrenheit, and place the arancini in the oven on a baking tray lined with parchment paper. Bake the arancini for about 15 minutes, until they are crisp and golden brown on the outside. Finally, enjoy!

They’re a great meal, but they’re also great as appetizers for a party.

Cooking Food General Indian Cooking Recipes

Easy Fish Tikka Recipe Served with Mint Chutney

Tikka is one of my favourite appetizers, but unfortunately, good tikka is surprisingly difficult to come by outside India. Craving decent tikka (especially fish tikka), I have tried multiple recipes over the years, and finally, I think I’ve found the perfect combination and balance of ingredients. This recipe, arrived at after some fine-tuning and re-mixing, and much experimentation 😉 is also relatively easy to follow.

Mmmm just look at how delicious this looks:

Tandoori tikka recipe

If you’d like to try it out, here is the recipe!


1 pound fish cut into 1.5 inch cubes (I’ve found that haddock works really well for tikka)

For the Marinade:

6-8 large cloves of garlic

1/2 tablespoon grated ginger

1/2 cup fresh coriander leaves

3 tbsp lime juice

1 tbsp grated lime zest

1 tbsp kashmiri red chili powder

1 tsp freshly ground cumin powder

1/2 tsp garam masala

1 tsp salt

1 tsp rock salt

2 tbsp vegetable oil

1 tsp mustard oil

1 tbsp gram flour

1/2 cup yoghurt


Set aside the gram flour, yoghurt and half the oil. Put the rest of the marinade ingredients in a blender, or food processor, and process into a smooth paste.

In the meantime, fry the gram flour in the oil that was set aside, until the flour darkens a bit and becomes fragrant (this should take about one, or one and half minutes).

Combine the fried flour, spice paste, and yoghurt in a bowl, then add the fish pieces to this. Marinate the fish in the mixture for at least 4 hours, or even overnight (place the fish and marinade in the refrigerator during this time).


When you’re ready to serve the tikka, broil the fish in the oven (at the highest setting for about 15 minutes, basting half way through with butter), or, if you can, grill it over a barbecue. I think it tastes best when it’s grilled on the barbecue, but broiling works well enough, at a pinch.

Serve the tikka with mint chutney (to make chutney at home, blitz a cup of coriander leaves with half a cup of mint leaves, 2-3 green chillies, 2 tbsp of lime juice, 3-4 tbsp of greek yoghurt, and rock salt to taste. Add more yoghurt if you want a thicker consistency, or if the chutney tastes too hot for your liking). You can also garnish the plate or tray you serve the tikka on with onions sliced into rings, or green chilies.

And there you have it, a delicious appetizer, that I sometimes eat with roti or rice as a main course. It also makes for a great snack at cocktail parties.

Fish tikka