I recently taught on my first PopUp Chef cookery masterclass, these wonderful wild mushroom and mascarpone arancini risotto balls.

Risotto balls, full of wild mushrooms, creamy mascarpone and parmesan, make these arancini balls a real delight to eat.

Classically they are a sicilian snack made from leftover risotto. A wonderful creation, thank you Italy.

They are quite fun to make and perfect as a starter or a snack. I added a small piece of mozzarella inside the arancini balls so once you cut them open, the mozzarella oozes out, delicious.

Below in order is Sarah, me and Steve filling the arancini balls with mozzarella.

On the cookery masterclass. we also made homemade fresh pasta 3 ways. As you can see we had lots of fun and loved eating the creamy mascarpone and wild mushroom arancini risotto balls.

Check out the recipe below for all the instructions and tips on cooking wild mushroom risotto and then how to turn them into arancini balls.

If you just want to make the risotto, follow the recipe below without rolling into arancini balls. For the risotto, you want to achieve a wetter consistency, do this by adding a little more stock to loosen the rice and add the mascarpone, parmesan, parsley and seasoning at the end.

I do totally recommend trying the arancini balls, especially with the delicious melted mozzarella inside. Just check out the picture below, does that not want you to make them??

clock clock iconcutlery cutlery iconflag flag iconfolder folder iconinstagram instagram iconpinterest pinterest iconfacebook facebook iconprint print iconsquares squares iconheart heart iconheart solid heart solid icon

Wild Mushroom Arancini



110g of Carnaroli or Arborio rice

½ white onion

2 cloves of garlic

25g of Dried Porcini mushrooms (soak in a pint of cold water to rehydrate) 

100g portabello mushrooms

70g Mascarpone

30g of grated Parmesan

2 pints of vegetable or chicken stock made from stock cubes. (make more if needed)

50g Butter

Fresh parsley


The first step is to make the risotto and let it cool or use leftover risotto from the day before. 

To make the wild mushroom risotto

  • Firstly, soak the dried Porcini mushrooms in a pint of cold water to rehydrate for 20 minutes.
  • While the porcini mushrooms are soaking, finely dice ½ of an onion and 2 cloves of garlic, add a little olive oil to a pan, heat a little and add the onion and garlic, cook for 2 minutes until soft. 
  • now add the risotto rice and stir around for a minute. 
  • Now add a ladle of stock and cook on a medium to high heat. You want to keep stirring constantly so the risotto does not stick to the pan.  
  • Keep stirring until the liquid is all soaked up by the rice, then add another ladle or 2 and repeat. 
  • Keep adding more stock and stirring constantly as you cook the rice until al dente. 
  • Also, add some of the porcini soaking liquid as stock to the rice while cooking. Note: drain this stock through a sieve to remove any possible grit from the mushrooms.
  • Use more stock or a little water if you need more liquid to cook the rice.
  • In a separate pan, add some butter and saute the diced portabella mushrooms with a little salt and pepper until a little golden brown. 
  • Add the cooked portabella mushrooms and soaked porcini mushrooms to the rice. 
  • Check the rice is al dente, slightly firm to the bite. If not, keep cooking with more stock until the right texture.
  • Once the rice is “Al Dente” add the mascarpone, parmesan, chopped parsley and season with salt and pepper.
  • For the arancini, allow the risotto to cool down as quickly as possible. I find taking the rice out of the pan and spreading along on a tray will quicken this process. 
  • Once the risotto has cooled, dice some mozzarella into small cubes. 
  • In the palm of your hand, take a small ball of risotto, flatten like a pancake, add the mozzarella in the centre and wrap the rice around the mozzarella. Then roll into a ball and place on a tray. 
  • Do this for all the risotto mixture. 
  • Now set up to pane (breadcrumb) the arancini balls, place flour, egg & milk and panko breadcrumbs in 3 separate bowls.
  • Roll the arancini balls first in the flour, then the egg wash and finally coat in the breadcrumbs. 
  • Heat up a deep fryer to 180°c.
  • Deep fry for 3-4 minutes until golden brown and finish off in the oven for 5 minutes. 
  • Serve with a little rocket salad and parmesan shaving.
  • Enjoy.


  • If you are serving as risotto, use a little more liquid to loosen up the rice and serve with chopped parsley.
  • If using for arancini, you want the rice to have soaked up all the liquid, once you add the mascarpone, the rice will be slightly wetter and creamy.
  • Once you have made and coated the arancini balls in breadcrumbs, you can keep in the fridge and use the next day.
  • This recipe will yield 8-12 risotto balls depending on the size you roll them. 
  • Cuisine: Italian

Keywords: Wild Mushroom Arancini