As a kid I was never fond of Upma but one day I stopped at an unknown Udipi joint on my way to Pune and I fell in love with it. The Upma they served was very moist (those melt in the mouth kinds) and was accompanied by coconut chutney and sambar. Upma at home was never served with either but I liked the combination and needless to say, I gulped it all down in seconds. I wondered what was different from the other versions I have had before and nailed down to three things – the moist texture, a tad bit of ghee and a generous amount of coriander blended in while cooking. Typically I used to cook sooji till all the water is evaporated giving it a dry texture now I stop when it is still moist and add in some ghee and coriander mix them well and take it off the heat immediately and yoo hoo!! my super yummy Upma is ready..:)
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- 2 tablespoon oil
- 1/2 teaspoon mustard seeds
- 1 sprig of curry leaves or kadipatta, kadipatta roughly 10-12 leaves
- 1/2 teaspoon urad dal
- 1 teaspoon cashew nuts, chopped finely
- 2 Indian or Thai green chilies (Bird's eye), slit lengthwise
- 1/2 of medium sized onion, chopped finely
- 1/4 teaspoon ginger paste
- 1 cup sooji / rava, semolina
- 1 teaspoon sugar
- salt to taste
- 2 cups hot water
- 1 tablespoon ghee
- 1 tablespoon finely chopped cilantro / coriander leaves for garnishing
- Heat oil in a medium sized wok and then add mustard seeds. As they begin to splutter add curry leaves, urad dal and cashews(if using). Fry them for a minute.
- Add ginger paste and onions. Fry the onion till they are translucent and then add sooji and continue frying till it turns light brown and a sweet aroma emanates from it.
- Take 2 cups hot water and add it. [ Be very careful and keep away from the gas as much as possible because there will be a lot of sputtering].
- Add salt and sugar and stir well. Lower the gas and let it simmer for another 5-10 minutes until all the water is absorbed and the sooji mixture is moist but not dry.
- Add ghee and coriander leaves and blend them in.
- Take the wok off heat and serve sooji hot either on its own or accompanies by Chutney or Sambar.
Disclaimer: Approximate Nutritional information is provided as a courtesy and can vary depending on the exact ingredients/brands used. If you have health issues, please work with a registered dietician or nutritionist.