Upma - I want it for breakfast!
While living abroad has its perks for global cuisine exploration, it does bring perils along when one needs pantry replenishment. Thank God to Asian supermarkets in my neighborhood where I can get almost all my regular supplies picked up from, and the good ol' supermarket, AH, that is competing hard and bringing stuff like ghee to its pantry - win win for me I must say! However, the one thing that I always found hard to gather was semolina. Pizza bakers can't do without it, pudding makers need it, and I couldn't seem to find it anywhere. It was all okay as I knew there would be one day that I would visit an Indian supermarket, but craving hit hard the other morning as I longed for a good bite or two of upma, a classic South Indian recipe that we love having for breakfast along with a good coconut chutney. Sigh!
It bothered me for a few days and I checked online what semolina was called in Dutch, and the image of an AH labeled pack appeared on top of my search. Wait, what?! AH? Dutch disneyland sells semolina - no way! I ran straight down to check at the store below if that was true, and indeed it was! There I had a small and extremely affordable pack of griesmeel branded AH with me. The store manager perhaps caught my excitement and pointed to a shelf full of readymade semolina pudding at the fridge counter. Wow! I am happy - I have semolina, and a great story to share when I share an upma with friends and family next.
Time to cook: 20 minutes
- 1 cup Semolina/griesmeel
- 1 cup finely chopped veggies
- 1 shallot
- 1 tomato
- A few curry leaves
- 1 tsp black mustard seeds
- 1/4 tsp turmeric powder
- 3 cups hot water
- 4-5 tbsp cooking oil
- A few stems of coriander
- Salt to taste
- Dry roast the semolina in a hot pan until it starts to turn light golden in color. Set aside.
- In the same pan, heat some oil and add the mustard seeds.
- Once the mustard seeds start crackling, add the curry leaves, shallots, tomatoes, and veggies. Stir fry for a few minutes until the veggies are almost done.
- Add turmeric, salt, and the roasted semolina. Combine, and continue stirring for another minute.
- Add the water, and stir vigorously to avoid forming lumps. Remove from the heat and serve as soon as the water is absorbed by the semolina.
- Garnish with coriander.
- Bon apetit!