Tuesday, June 11, 2019

Gremolata Supplì – Surprise !

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Supplì was apparently word-napped from the French surprise because of the morsels – sometimes meat, often cheese - concealed behind the crusty facade, in the depths of the creamy rice filling.

Many recipes tell you that Supplì are made from leftover risotto. No one has that much risotto left over unless they’ve deliberately planned it, or are extremely bad at judging portion size. Making the risotto fresh also means that you can experiment with flavours and ingredients you mightn’t necessarily want to have as a full meal but would happily scoff as a snack.
The bunch of parsley I threw into the shopping basket yesterday was like a green beacon reminding me that the price had inflated by an outrageous 125% in a week. Is there a world shortage of parsley? The bright side of such a price hike is that rather than let it sit there masquerading largely as an edible bouquet until I throw it out, I was determined to put it to good use. I love gremolata – lemon zest, garlic, parsley – sprinkled over Ossobuco. Surprise! Here it is as a star ingredient.
I made the Supplì fairly large – about 100g each – as they were for lunch – 2 per portion. If you are making them as a canapé go smaller.)

For 12 Supplì (of about 100g each) you will need...

...For the risotto
2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
1 medium onion, finely chopped
3 fat cloves of garlic, crushed
2 teaspoons of finely grated lemon zest (yellow part only)
250g risotto rice such as Arborio or Carnaroli
750mls hot chicken stock
250mls dry white wine
4 tablespoons finely chopped fresh parsley
50g Parmesan cheese 

First heat the olive oil in a medium saucepan over a medium heat and add the onion. Cook without colouring until translucent—8–10 minutes.
Add the garlic and lemon zest, along with the rice and cook for a further minute, stirring to coat the rice with the oil.

Combine the stock and wine and add 250mls of this liquid to the pan, stirring frequently until the liquid is almost absorbed before adding the next 250mls of the liquid and again stirring frequently until almost absorbed. Repeat twice more until the entire litre of liquid is more or less absorbed and you have a creamy pot of rice. Remove from the heat and stir in the Parmesan cheese. Taste and add seasoning if necessary. Cover and allow to cool a little before placing in the fridge to chill thoroughly. 

To finish the Supplì
150g plain flour
3 eggs, beaten
200g fine breadcrumbs 

approximately 100g mozzarella, cut into 12 cubes of roughly 8g each
vegetable oil for deep frying (I use sunflower oil or olive oil) 

Remove the chilled risotto from the fridge. Rinse your hands in cold water and shake off the excess moisture. Take about 2 tablespoons of the risotto at a time and, using your hands, mould it in your hands into a ball or egg shape. Bury a cube of mozzarella in the centre and close the rice around it to seal it in well. Chill for about 30 minutes before proceeding with the next step.
When the rice balls have chilled, set out three shallow containers with the flour in the first, the beaten egg in the second and the breadcrumbs in the third.

Supplì production line - flour, egg, breadcrumbs
 Coat each ball in flour, egg and breadcrumbs, making sure to cover the entire surface at each stage . (At this stage, you can freeze them on a tray and then wrap them for storage in the freezer, thawing before deep frying.) Chill for at least an hour before deep frying.
When ready to cook, heat the oil for deep frying to 180°C (350°F) and monitor the temperature during cooking. Any hotter than this and the Supplì will brown long before the cheese melts in the centre—not a complete disaster but isn’t melty mozzarella so much nicer... Carefully lower the Supplì into the hot fat being careful not to overcrowd the pan. You’ll need to cook them in batches. Fry until deep golden brown.
Transfer the cooked Supplì  to a warm dish lined with kitchen paper to absorb any excess fat and leave to cook for a couple of minutes before serving - with a homemade tomato sauce, or garlic mayonnaise if you so desire.
This is street food so forget the cutlery and break them in two with your hands, stretching the “telephone wires” of mozzarella between the two halves in time-honoured tradition.


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  1. That looks heavenly! I want this for lunch. :)

  2. What an incredibly delicious post, I want to try this :D

    Choc Chip Uru

  3. They have the perfect name (surprise) and what a pleasant surprise they are. Looks crunchy from the outside and creamy from the inside, not to forget all the flavors each Suppli has. They are perfect :)

  4. It has been AGES since I last made and had a SURPRISE...these look mouthwatering!

  5. Hester, what a wonderful post - I love the recipe not only because I am always partial to "finger sized" food but because these look just wonderful to me. The recipe sounds so fabulous with the added mozarella as well as the gremolata. Fresh, delicious, summer "street food" - I would like some for my lunch now, please!
    Hope all is well!
    Have a great weekend!

  6. I hate the random price hikes on herbs (and all other fruits and veggies too) just when you need them!! Makes me wish I had a veggie garden lol. These look so good!! I don't think I'd be able to stop at two haha...

  7. Scrumptious! This is such a wonderful recipe.



  8. Delicious! These look so tasty, I think I'd prefer them bigger as well. Perfect. :)

  9. These look like the perfect company appetizer if I ever saw one. The crunchy outside and cream inside look completely mouthwatering!

  10. I love street food and what you cooked up here definitely to smile for. Those crusty balls look so much fun to eat. :)

  11. Hi Hester, such a yummy and appetizing finger food! Would love to try this one day.
    Thanks for visiting my humble blog and you have a great day. Regards :)

  12. Hi Hester! It's been far too long since I last stopped by your blog. I've seen this dish before and it has always made my mouth water. Great recipe, thanks for sharing:)

  13. What delightful snacks! The Spanish make these for tapas plates, but I can't think what they call them ... I call them, delish!


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