Upma is a typically South Indian dish, normally served at breakfast. But it can be had at lunch or dinner too. Or even as a quick snack. It is the go-to option when unexpected guests drop in. Upma is comfort food for many South Indians. The classic upma uses semolina (ravai, suji) as the main ingredient. However, any grain can be used to make this wonderful dish. It is so versatile that it’s preparation is only limited by your imagination. Plain upma, vegetable upma, tamarind upma, lemon upma… I can go on!
When I adopted a WFPB lifestyle, this is one of the dishes that I really missed. I mean the classic version using semolina – because semolina is a refined product. However, I soon learnt that the other options were equally tasty and much, much healthier.
Today, I present a proso millet (panivaragu, barri) upma.
1 cup proso millet
1 medium sized onion, chopped fine
50 gms French beans, chopped fine
1 small capsicum, sliced
1 large potato, cut into small pieces
(Use any vegetables of your choice)
2 green chillies, chopped fine
2 tbsp roasted peanuts
1/2 tsp mustard seeds (sarson, kadugu)
1/2 tsp split black gram (urad dal, ulutham parupu)
4 cups water
Salt to taste
A pinch of turmeric powder (haldi, manjal podi)
Heat a wok and add mustard seeds
When they begin to splutter, add the onion and green chillies
Saute till the onion is translucent
Add the vegetables and continue to saute for a minute
Add the water, turmeric powder, salt and the millet
Cover and cook for about 15 minutes on medium flame
Once done, remove from flame and add the roasted peanuts
Serve immediately with your favourite chutney