You're Quite the Dish: Wild Mushroom Arancini at Barbuzzo

By Cristina Perachio
Add Comment Add Comment | Comments: 0 | Posted Jan. 10, 2012

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Wild Mushroom Arancini at Barbuzzo, you’re quite the dish!

Thank you, honey. Are you hungry? Come sit down and have something to eat.

Why don’t you tell me about where you’re from first?

Well, I’m from here, of course, 13th Street. But my recipe hails from Sicily.

Deep-fried rice and cheese certainly sounds like an American treat!

I am hard to resist. Executive Chef Marcie Turney stuffs me with classic risotto cooked just past al dente, to give me a nice, firm texture. Then I’m mixed with maitake hen of the woods mushrooms.

What’s the secret ingredient holding you together?

That would be my fontina cheese: A single square is pushed into the center of each rice ball before I’m breaded in egg, flour and panko, then deep-fried.

Your finishing touches?

If you’d like me vegetarian, I’m simply topped with a San Marzano tomato sauce made with onion, garlic and EVOO, and garnished with a pine-nut basil pesto.

And if I’m a carnivore?

Then I have the good stuff for you: house-cured lardo.

Wow. Can you tell us in great detail and a seductive voice how the lardo is prepared?

Don’t get fresh. Chef Turney gets whole pigs, ranging from 150 to 175 pounds, from the Lancaster Farm Fresh Cooperative. She saves the fat back, sears it in salt, herbs and black peppercorns before curing it for about a month. It’s then put in an oak house smoker, sliced very thin and warmed with a heating gun before being draped on top of me.

Damn, I need a drink.

I’d suggest our Barbera, which is a slightly peppery red wine. Salute!

Barbuzzo, 110 S. 13th St. 215.546.9300.

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