One of my favorite ways to eat the Upma is the Avarakkai Upma. The little seeds do wonder to our humble upma. Read to get recipe & a little more details about Upma as a dish. This is finally the start of the “Breakfasts of India” series
The one meal that I try and enjoy, savouring every bite is breakfast. The saying is true, it is the most important meal of the day, giving you enough energy to take on another brand new day. And when it comes to breakfasts, upma is a household favourite. It is quick to make, and packed with vegetables and sooji, which it is made from is very filling as well – so a brilliant combination, all in all. It’s becoming a favourite all over India, and it’s variants have been appreciated all over the world. Some years ago a mumbai-born chef, Floyd Cardoz, won a nice $10,000 on the widely watched show – Top Chef Masters – and what did he make to win it? Upma!
The soft texture and the crunch of all the different vegetables that are added to it – have it with a dollop of ghee – the combination is to die for. Upma is a derivation from Uppumavu, In many South Indian languages, uppu means salt and mavu and pindi or mean flour. This delectable dish is also known as Khara Bhath in Karnataka.
There are many variants of upma that you can make – the one made with lots of tomatoes included, known as Tomato Bhath – has an incredibly tangy taste to it – and can be had by itself without any sides, although a piping hot bowl of sambhar and some coconut chutney would take this super tasty dish to. You can even add peanuts or rome cashewnuts roasted in ghee to it – to make the dish crunchier and bitable. Some people in Maharashtra are known to eat upma with a nice serving of crunchy chiwda on top.
During the end of winter (and winter) one of my favorite ways to eat Upma is the Avarakkai Upma. The little seeds do wonder to our humble upma. And if you doubt me ask anyone from Karantaka and they will tell you what I say 100% true.
- 1/2 cup semolina
- 1 cup Avarekai seeds
- 1 medium onion chopped
- 2 tsp coconut oil (you can use vegetable oil)
- 1 tsp mustard seeds
- 2 green chilli slit lengthwise
- 1 dry red chilli
- Salt to taste
- Dry roast rava in a kadai until it turns light brown (I use dry roast all my rava when I buy it and store)
- Heat oil in kadai. Add mustard seeds and sautee till they start crackling.
- Add curry leaves, dry red chilli and green chillies. Sautee further for 30 seconds.
- Add onions and fry till they are soft and translucent. At this point add the Avarekai seeds, rawa & salt. Sautee till 2-3 minutes and add hot water
- Cook till the water has evaporated and both rava and Avarekai seeds are cooked.
- Serve hot with chutney or a spoon of pickle and a generous dose of ghee.
With this post, I am finally kicking off the series I promised in Jan – Breakfasts of India. With a rich culinary heritage and variety, I intend to explore India through breakfast. Come take this journey with me