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Bacon Butternut Arancini with Pumpkin Seed Pesto Dip

4.34 from 3 votes
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  • 2 cups cooled butternut bacon risotto
  • 1 large egg, lightly beaten
  • 8 ounces fontina cheese, cut into cubes
  • 1/2 cup  finely grated parmesan cheese
  • a pinch of salt and pepper
  • 2 cups seasoned bread crumbs
  • vegetable oil for frying

pumpkin seed pesto dip

  • 2/3 cup plain greek yogurt
  • 3 tablespoons pumpkin seed pesto
  • 2 tablespoons freshly grated parmesan cheese
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • pinch of salt and pepper


  • Note: to cool the risotto quickly, you can make a batch then spread it out on a baking sheet to cool and slightly dry. I’ve done it both ways (the other being to store it overnight in the fridge) and they both work great.
  • In a large bowl, stir together the cooled rice, egg, parmesan, salt, pepper and about 1/2 cup of the breadcrumbs. Using your hands, form the mixture into 1-inch round balls. Gently push a cube or two of fontina cheese in the center of each ball, make sure to seal it all around. Roll each ball in the remaining bread crumbs and place it on a baking sheet. Once finished, place the baking sheet in the freezer for 30 minutes.
  • While the rice balls are freezing, heat about 1-2 inches of oil in a large pot. You want it to be between 325 and 350 degrees F. Add about 2 to 3 rice balls to the oil at one time, frying until golden on all sides, about 3 to 4 minutes per side. Remove with a slotted spoon and place on a paper towel to remove excess grease. Repeat.
  • Serve immediately with extra grated parmesan and the pesto dip.

pumpkin seed pesto dip

  • Whisk all ingredients together until smooth.

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