Upma may be described as the South Indian equivalent of Grits. Traditionally made from cream of wheat (sometimes erroneously labeled as semolina at Indian Grocery stores) , It makes for a nutritious tasty and quick breakfast. The .semolina is toasted to prevent it from getting mushy in the cooking process and is cooked along with a variety of vegetables. A variation on the traditional version is the 'semiya' upma made from vermicelli (probably the most well known type of pasta in India.
This recipe makes use of stellini pasta, a shape traditionally used for soup, but works wonderfully for a kid friendly breakfast. —Panfusine
6 ounces Stellini pasta
1/2 a small cauliflower
1/2 cup frozen green peas
1 red onion, finely diced
3 tablespoons olive oil
1 teaspoon black mustard seeds
1 small green chilli (finely sliced)
1 inch piece Ginger finely chopped
1 pinch asafetida
1/8 - 1/4 teaspoon red chili powder(optional)
Juice of one lime/lemon
Salt to taste
In This Recipe
Toast the pasta on a skillet on low heat till it begins turning golden. Keep stirring the pasta while it changes color since they can get burnt quite quickly. Remove from fire.
In a large container, boil sufficient quantity of water (with salt added). add the pasta & cook (toasting tends to lengthen cooking time, it takes about 2-3 minutes more than the time listed on the packaging for regular water & Once cooked, rinse off the starchy water drain and set aside. Add a tsp of oil to keep the shapes from sticking. Once the pasta has been strained out,use the starch water to boil the peas till they're done. Set aside.
Using the fine side of a box grater, grate the cauliflower florets. This shreds the florets down to the size of couscous ( a fine middle eastern pasta in the shape of tiny beads).
Add 2 tbsp of oil and the red chili powder to the cauliflower, spread on a lined baking sheet & roast at 400 C till golden. (~ 10 min), remove, transfer into a bowl & season with salt.
In a skillet, Add the remaining oil, heat till near smoking, Add mustard. and allow to sputter & pop.
When the mustard begins sputtering, add the onions, chopped green chilli, ginger, asafetida & salt. and saute till the onions turn translucent. add the pasta, peas & roasted cauliflower and toss till all the elements are well combined. Transfer to a serving dish. Drizzle with lime juice prior to serving.