Oven-Fried Rice Ball with Gruyère



  • 1 tbsp. olive oil
  • 1 medium shallot, minced
  • 1 garlic clove, minced
  • 1 cup arborio rice
  • 2 cups water
  • 3/4 cup shredded Gruyère cheese (2 1/2 ounces)
  • 1/2 cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese (1 1/2 ounces)
  • 1/4 cup mixed chopped herbs (DT: I used lemon thyme, oregano, and basil)
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 2 large egg whites
  • 1/2 cup panko (Japanese bread crumbs)
  • Makes 20-30 rice balls


  • Preheat oven to 450°.  Heat the olive oil in a medium saucepan.  Add the shallot and garlic and cook over moderate heat until softened, about 4 minutes.
  • Add the rice and cook, stirring for 30 seconds.  Stir in the water and bring to a boil.  Cover and simmer over moderately low heat, stirring occasionally, until the water has been completely absorbed, about 10 minutes.  Scrape the rice into a bowl and let cool to room temperature.
  • Stir the Gruyère, 1/4 cup of the Parmesan and all the chopped herbs into the rice.  Season the rice with salt and pepper.
  • In a medium stainless steel bowl, beat the egg whites with a pinch of salt until firm peaks form.  Stir one-fourth of the whites into the rice to loosen the mixture, then stir in the remaining whites.  Roll the rice into 1 1/2 inch balls.  ( Periodically wet your hands will keep the rice from sticking to you. This will allow you to make more compact rice balls.)
  • In a shallow bowl, toss the panko with the remaining 1/4 up of Parmesan.  Dredge the rice ball in the panko crumbs and transfer to a large baking sheet.  Bake the rice balls in the upper third of the oven for 25 minutes or until golden and crisp.  Let stand for 5 minutes then transfer to a platter and serve.
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