You know you’re supposed to be ditching refined flour and embracing whole grains, so why not make it easy on yourself and follow along with Ann Taylor Pittman, the James Beard Award–winning executive editor of Cooking Light? Her new cookbook is a treasure trove of whole and ancient grain preparations, from the familiar to the exotic. Take a peek into the wide world of these nutrient- and fiber-packed ingredients and turn over a healthy new leaf.
Traditional arancini are made with rice that’s combined with cheese and other fillings, then breaded and fried. This version uses millet that’s cooked in extra water so that it’s soft and sticky, and combined with two kinds of cheese and buttery, garlicky wilted spinach. You can cook the croquettes ahead and refrigerate until shortly before serving; warm them in a 350°F oven for 15 minutes or until thoroughly heated.
Change it up: If you don’t have millet on hand, you can make the croquettes with 3 cups cooked brown rice. If possible, overcook the rice a bit so that it’s soft and slightly sticky.
- 2 cups water
- 2/3 cups uncooked millet
- 1 tablespoon butter
- 3 garlic cloves, minced
- 5 ounces fresh baby spinach
- 2 ounces part-skin mozzarella cheese, shredded (about 1/2 cup)
- 1 ounce Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese, grated (about 1/4 cup)
- 5/8 teaspoon kosher salt
- 1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
- 2 large egg whites
- 1 large egg
- 1 cup whole-wheat panko (Japanese bread crumbs)
- 3 tablespoons canola oil
For the croquettes
Combine 2 cups water and millet in a small saucepan; bring to a boil. Cover, reduce heat, and simmer 25 minutes. Remove from heat; let stand 10 minutes. Fluff millet with a fork. Place in a large bowl; cool slightly.
Heat a medium skillet over medium heat. Add butter; swirl until butter melts. Add garlic; cook 2 minutes, stirring frequently. Add spinach; cook 1 minute or until spinach wilts, tossing constantly. Add spinach mixture to millet. Stir in cheeses and next 4 ingredients (through whole egg).
Place panko in a shallow dish. Divide millet mixture into 24 equal portions, shaping each into a ball. Lightly dredge balls in panko, flattening each slightly into a 2-inch patty.
Heat a large nonstick skillet over medium heat. Add 1½ tablespoons oil to pan; swirl to coat. Add 12 patties to pan; cook 3 minutes on each side or until browned and thoroughly heated. Repeat procedure with 1½ tablespoons oil and 12 patties.