The lowly uppuma frequently gets a bad rap. Despite it having been a winning recipe on a TV chef competition, many of us harbor a little bit of disdain for this dish. This is reflected in phrases like 'just uppuma'.
My daughter and I love uppuma. It is nutritous and capable of infinite variety and can adapt to the use of the popular grain of the decade; be it quinoa or bulger, steel cut oats or lapsi. Easy to make and filling, it can be eaten off the stove or at room temperature and will travel well. I often carry some on flights to avoid the over salted pretzels that is dropped in my lap. Try this recipe and make up your own.
I often make and serve upppuma with accompaniments to my guests. It’s quite perfect for a special dinner if you dress it up with a few interesting vegetables and some broken cashew nuts. Try pine nuts or macadamia for a change. Your guests will cluck with pleasure. What I have provided here is a basic recipe and you should feel free to use the vegetable you have available. Include at least two or three different ones.
Uppuma with kale, cilantro and lime
- Coarse Semolina (rawa) – 2 cups
- Vegetable oil – 4 tsp
- Ghee – 4 tsps
- Black mustard seed – 1 tsp
- Cumin seeds – 1 tsp
- Asafoetida (hing) – 1/2 tsp
- Split urad dal – 1 tsp
- Peanuts or cashew pieces – 1/4 cup
- Chili Flakes – 1/4 tsp
- Fresh green chilies – 2-4
- Minced Curry leaves – 4-6
- Chopped Kale – 1 cup
- Chopped Onions – 1/2 cup
- Cherry or grape tomatoes – 10-12
- Sliced carrots – 1/4 cup
- Sliced zucchini – 1/4 cup
- Chopped cilantro – 1/2 cup
- Fresh lime juice – 2 tsp
- Pan roast 2 cups of coarse semolina (rava) with 2 tsp of oil or ghee until it just starts to brown and set aside
- In a deep sauté pan, temper mustard seeds, cumin and urad in a blend of vegetable oil and ghee (optional)
- Add your choice of cashew nuts, pine nuts, peanuts of macadamia nuts
- Add onions and chilies, turmeric powder, chili flakes and asafoetida
- Add chopped kale and cilantro and sliced carrots and zucchini and cherry tomatoes
- When vegetables are sautéed add 3.5 cups of water and bring to a boil
- Add 1/2 cup of peas and salt and bring heat down to simmer
- Add the roasted semolina while stirring briskly to avoid lumping
- Cover and cook over low heat till the water is absorbed
- Add juice of one fresh lime
Serve with lime pickles, or chutney and some salad and or plain or greek yogurt.