Uppuma, a popular dish from the Southern belt of India that is quite popular in the western region too, is now at a global level with its popularity going all over and taking various forms as Khara Bhath when a lot of vegetables get added and some spicing with condiments happens and goes by different names depending on the region it comes from. Basically it can be considered to be a thick porridge made from roasted semolina that gets its color and taste based on the ingredients added to it. I was not adding this post to my blog all these days as it is not a favorite of Ad and S but Ar and AS are quite fond of it as also G more so when loads of veggies get added to it and I thought it was only apt to include it in my blog.
Semolina (cream of wheat) 1 cup
Onion 2 medium-sized cut finely
Green bell pepper finely chopped 1 medium-sized
Grated ginger 1 tsp
Mix of cauliflower, beans, carrot and peas cut as shown in image 1½ cups or 2 cups
Ghee 1 tsp
oil 1 tbsp
Curd ½ cup
water 1½ cups
Salt 1 tsp
Oil 1 tbsp
Mustard 1 tsp
Chana dal 1 tbsp
Green chili slit 2 or paste ½ tsp
Curry leaves 2 sprigs
Freshly chopped coriander leaves 1 tbsp to garnish
Heat 1 tbsp of oil in a wok and roast the semolina on a low flame until the aroma of the roasted sooji can be smelt. The color should be light golden; in case you are not sure on the color, add a cashew nut along with the flour and as the color of the cashew changes, it an indication to remove the flour from the flame. Transfer the sooji to a plate.
In the same wok heat another spoon of oil and add the mustard seeds. As it starts spluttering add chana dal. When the color turns golden add the chopped onion, chilies, and a pinch of salt. When the sauteed onion gets translucent add the chopped capsicum and saute for a mnute or two.
Add the vegetable mix and salt and saute till they are cooked to al Dante stage.
While the veggies are getting cooked, boil water and whipped curd in a pan so that it is bubbling by the time the vegetables are cooked. I prefer to cook the beans separately as they take more time to get cooked.
Add the roasted sooji to the wok and mix well . Keep the flame low and pour the boiling water to the mix and stir continuously to avoid lumps.
Cover the wok with a lid and switch off the flame. Let the uppuma cook in the heat and steam to give a smooth consistency. After 10 minutes add the ghee and garnish with coriander leaves. Serve hot
In case you want to make the uppuma spicier add ½ tsp of red chilli powder while sauteing the onions, Otherwise, fry sun-dried green chilies (mor milaga) in oil, crumble it and add it to water–curds mix
If you prefer tomatoes in uppuma, skip curd and add 2 cups of water. For the tangy taste squeeze half a lemon juice when adding ghee and mix well
A traditional Arabic cuisine call it Egyptian, Lebanese (nammoura), or Turkish (revani ), this dessert with a typical rosewater flavor or orange blossom flavor, is a favorite in Arabic homes. Typically made from semolina and most often with coconut it is soaked in sugar syrup and is savored by all! It is somewhat similar to kesari (sooji ka halwa) made in Indian homes most often. Unlike our dessert that is cooked over fire (shall soon post a traditional recipe and one that is made in microwave mode) this is baked and gives a grainy texture. Baking makes the dish simpler as one does not have to keep stirring strenuously to get a smooth mix as in cooking over the flame.
Often egg is used in this dessert for softness; this dish being eggless, yogurt was used for the spongy texture. If need be a little milk can also be used. The measure given here makes about 35 to 40 pieces.
Semolina 2½ cups
All purpose flour 1 tbsp
Dessicated coconut 2 tbsp or freshly grated coconut ½ cup
Caster sugar 1 cup
Melted butter ¼ cup (2 tbsp) + 1 tsp for roasting semolina
Vanilla essence ¼ tsp
Yogurt 1 cup (thick)
Baking soda 1 tsp
For the syrup
Sugar 1 cup
Water 1 cup
Rose water 1 tsp or rose essence ½ tsp
Lemon juice 1 tsp
Sliced almond 20
Roast the semolina in butter in a heavy-bottomed pan till it changes color slightly. Transfer it to a bowl and add the other ingredients viz sugar, yogurt, butter, coconut, baking soda, and essence. Mix well with a spatula to get a smooth mix. If the mix looks very thick loosen it with milk to get a thick batter consistency.
Preheat the oven to 200°C while working on the mix.
Grease a 12″ × 8″ baking tray and layer the tray with the batter. Let the tray have a ½” space for the mix to rise. Cut squares of 2″ × 2″ with a thick knife and arrange the sliced almonds in the center of each square. Leave the tray in the oven at 200°C for 30 minutes or a little longer till the surface turns golden brown.
To enhance the caramelized look, brush the surface with milk half-way through baking.
While the mix is getting baked make the sugar syrup by adding water to sugar in a pan and boiling on low flame till the sugar melts. When the syrup starts boiling switch off the flame and add rose water and lemon juice and let the syrup cool.
Remove the tray from the oven and pour the syrup over the hot bake so that it gets soaked in the syrup. bake for another 5 minutes and let it cool to room temperature.
Leave the cooled tray in the refrigerate for 15 to 30 minutes before separating the pieces.
Savor the flavor of rose and enjoy!
In case you have orange blossom water use the same in place of rose water.
Idly is certainty not the hot “favorite” with my family members and they keep reminding me of the ‘abusive’ Mondays where Idly used to be the lunchbox package! One reason why I had never posted idly as one of the dishes in my blog although I love idli anytime and believe that it is one of the healthiest dishes ever besides being the comfort food during times of health indisposition.
I am also now overcoming my reluctance to post just because “phamily” believes they are anti-idly!! G prefers ravaidli to taditonal idli and often I make the same (Will Post a recipe later). While getting the ingredients ready for rava idli I realised I had a box of breadcrumbs stored in the refrigerator, leftover from the bread uppuma I made last week and decided to try it in idli …. and it was worth the effort!
Ingredients (12 idlis)
Semolina (chiroti rava) 1 cup
Bread crumbs 1 cup
Yogurt ¾ or 1 cup (as per taste)
Salt ½ tsp or less as bread is salted
Cooking oil 1 tsp
Mustard 1 tsp
Chana dal 1 tbsp
Green chilli 2 (medium) finely diced
Curry leaves 3 sprigs
Asafotida 1 pinch
Eno salt 1 tsp
Water 1 cup
Heat oil in a pan and add the mustard seeds to the hot oil. As soon as mustard seeds sputter add chana dal and chilie and saute on low flame. As the color changes add semolina and roast for 3 to 4 minutes.
Transfer the mix to a bowl and add the finely blitzed breadcrumbs to the mix in the bowl.
Add the finely diced curry leaves, salt and asafotida to the yogurt and whip well and transfer the mix to the bowl.
Whisk the batter well to get a thick consistency and let it rest for 30 minutes. Meanwhile grease the idli plates and keep them ready.
Add eno salt to the batter after 30 minutes and as soon as it froths, transfer the batter to idli plate and steam for 10 minutes to get spongy idlis.
Serve with chutney or sambhar as per choice
A ladle of normal idli batter added to the mix gives bulk to idlis.
Semolina (Sooji− preferably chiroti rava i.e. fine rava ) 1 cup
Rice flour ½ cup
Maida (All purpose flour) ¼ cup
Thick buttermilk/curds ½ cup
Asafotida ¼ tsp
Cumin seeds 1 tsp
Salt ¾ tsp
Curry leaves 2 sprigs (finely cut)
Finely chopped coriander leaves 1 tsp
Green chilli 1 (deseeded and finely cut or as paste)
Onion 1 (medium-sized) …finely cut or grated
Cooking oil (as required for cooking)
Water app. 2 cups
Add all the flours to a bowl, a teaspoon of oil and mix them well. Add salt, asafotida, curds, and water and stir well to avoid lumps in the batter.
Keep the batter aside for at least an hour and allow the batter to ‘rest’ to get a smooth batter. Add the remaining ingredients: cumin seeds, curry leaves, coriander leaves, chilli and onion and mix well. Ensure that the batter is of pouring consistency (not spreading consistency) and thinner in consistency than the ‘traditional dosai’.
Grease and heat the griddle and when hot enough pour the batter in a circular motion from the outer rim of the griddle to the center. As you spread the batter ensure there are small spaces in the dosai. Cook the dosai on a low flame and add drops of oil in the spaces and around the edge. Carefully flip the dosai with a spatula to cook the other side and serve with chutney of your choice (Coconut or onion/tomato chutney).
Chef’s Note: If you prefer pepper to chillies add finely crushed pepper in place of chili.
In place of cumin seeds you can add tempered mustard seeds.
Resting the batter for 2 to 3 hours gives excellent dosais. Excess batter can be kept in the fridge and used later.