I could never get away with an easy sandwich, a cereal - milk or a muffin kind breakfast at my home. I, being the one who have to cook on a daily basis can do with a nutella sandwich for my own convenience. However the younger one doesn't like anything sweeter and these quick, instant kind breakfasts get a big "No" from her. While the other adult who keeps traveling for his work, really hates the stuff intensely and besides, I can never shove food down somebody's throat just because I cooked it. And therefore each morning, we prepare and eat what we are used to since our childhoods - a filling, savory Indian breakfast. Friends/ relatives of ours' are surprised to see me dishing out hot steaming idlis, dosas in the morning rush hours, even after being away from the homeland for about one and half decades.
And so even though sandwiches seemed as the easy route, I went with an upma. Upma is a common south Indian breakfast and a quicker one to pull through among the traditional dishes. To make it quicker, rava frying, cooking the onion / vegetables and boiling the water can be done simultaneously. It is hard to clump up rice rava upma like the semolina one and it tastes wonderful.
Ingredients for 4 servings:
1.5 cups rice rava / finely cracked rice
Serrano peppers, finely chopped - 3 to 4 (If using any other variety, use as many as required.)
2 onions, finely chopped
1 cup prepared and finely chopped vegetables (I used frozen mixed vegetables that had carrot, beans, corn, fresh lima beans and peas.)
Salt to taste
2 -3 Tbsp oil
1 tsp mustard seeds
1 tsp chana dal / Bengal gram
1 tsp urad dal / Black gram
1 tsp cumin seeds
few curry leaves
1/8 tsp turmeric powder
3 cups water
* Dry fry the rava on medium flame until the rava starts to turn a shade darker. Remove the rava and set it aside.
* Heat oil in a deep bottomed pan / kadai. Add mustard seeds, chana dal, urad dal and cumin seeds. When the mustard seeds start to splutter and the dals turn red, add chillies and curry leaves. Sauté for a few seconds and then add onion and turmeric powder. Cook until the onion turns translucent. If using fresh vegetables, add them along with the onion and cook covered until they are done, for about 10 minutes.
* Next add water, frozen vegetables (if using) and salt to the pan. Set the stove to highest setting and let the water come to a rolling boil. Once the water is boiling, lower the flame. Add rava slowly in a steady stream, holding the rava container in your left hand while stirring with your right hand to avoid the lumps. Stir properly and cover the pan. Continue the cooking for a few more minutes until the rava is cooked, stirring in between once or twice.
Serve hot with chutney or chutney powder or daliya powder.
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