It’s that time of year – PARTY Time. 

It used to be that these Holiday parties involved me getting deck out in a special frock, having more then my fair share of Champagne, laughing way too loud and most likely eating three too many cookies.

That was then.

Now, the parties I go to involve almost the same amount of kids as adults, my party frock turned to the only clean pair of jeans I could find, I am still too loud trying to talk over crying babies and I have to divide my time between getting my drink on and chasing after a toddler. 

But with either kind of party, one thing is still very important to me- the food. Trying to find party food that is toddler friendly but parent worthy is a tough act. 

These fun Italian Arancini [which translates into Little Oranges] are a healthier baked version of the traditional fried balls. 

I made these for a small party I was having which involved both grown-ups and a couple of toddlers. The toddlers loved eating these balls off of the appetizer picks [probably could have been a better mom and bought appetizer picks without a pointy end] and the adults devoured these warm and crunchy little snacks. 

Made with whole grain brown rice, super food kale and basil these small snacks are a perfect idea for a meal on the go, a party appetizer or paired with a fresh salad would make a quick family dinner. 

quickly stir brown rice, kale, basil, egg white and both cheeses

with a firm hand, roll into little balls

gently roll into flour, dip into egg and then roll again in breadcrumbs

Kale + Pesto Baked Arancini

For Crust
1/4 cup Organic Whole Wheat Flour
1 large Organic Egg and 1 Organic Egg White, lightly beaten together
1/2 cup Organic Whole Wheat Flour

For Filling
1 cup cooked Organic Brown Rice
1/3 cup Organic Mozzarella, shredded
1/3 cup Organic Kale, shredded
1 Organic Egg White
3 tbsp Pecorino Romano
3 tbsp homemade or store bought Pesto

1 cup Organic Tomato Sauce, for serving

 Heat oven to 400. Spray a baking sheet or cover with parchment paper.

For filling, toss brown rice, mozzarella, kale, egg white, pecorino romano and pesto into a large bowl and mix well. Form 1 tbsp size balls with your palms. I found that I had to squeeze them together a little to make them stick together. Place on baking sheet.

For crust, in separate bowls or plates place flour, eggs and breadcrumbs.  Gently take your formed balls and roll first in the flour, then dip in the eggs and then finally roll into the breadcrumbs. Continue until all the balls have been rolled. Gently brush your balls with olive oil or use an olive oil spray. 

Bake for 8 minutes, then roll each ball over to get an even browning. Bake another 8 minutes or until all sides are golden brown. Serve immediately with tomato sauce.