Thursday, February 10, 2011

A Upma with many names

Morkali upma, khozamaa upma, Arisi upma, Morkuzh upma - one upma with different names. If you call by any other name, please write to me.

This upma is traditional recipe but not a popular one. If you ask your Paati (granny) or Kollu paati, she will tell you about this upma along with a nice old stories. Hearing the old stories, oh man, that's the best moment in your life. Sometime if my mom and her brothers were together, we kids will ask about their childhood. They used to talk about their childhood, school days, nick names, movies, books and the delicious food. Hope I will enjoy the same moment when I meet them all next month. Can't wait to see them all !

Whenever my mom prepare this upma, she always talk about her mom and the kitchen arrangement in the earlier days. No gas, no kerosene stove, my paati used to prepare in the traditional coal stove called 'kumuti adupu'. My mom prepares this upma in the same way except the coal stove.

I never tried this recipe until a month ago. Believe it or not, within this last 20 days I did this upma twice. Its an easy recipe, need no special ingredients or even a side dish. It will be best with a side dish, which I will tell  later.

Ingredients :
1 cup -- Rice flour
2/3 cup -- Yogurt (will be nice if it is little sour)
1 cup -- Water
1/3 cup -- Oil (Trust me, you need it)
1 tsp -- Turmeric powder
2 tbsp -- Urad dal
2 tbsp -- Chana dal
1 tsp -- Mustard seed
Dash of  Asafoetida
7-8 nos -- Red dried chillies or Mor millagai
Salt to taste
Curry leaves (optional)

--- In a bowl mix the rice flour, turmeric powder, Asafoetida, salt, yogurt and water.

--- Make the batter watery, like below. No harm in adding more water, if you need to get this consistency.

--- Take a heavy bottom pan with the oil. Turn the heat to medium. When the oil is hot, add mustard seeds and once they are cracked add the urad dal, chana dal and dry chillies. If you are using mor millagai, adjust the salt accordingly.
--- If using curry leaves, add them also now.

--- Fry the mixture until the dal colour is changed to golden brown. Now slowly and carefully pour the rice flour batter to the oil mixture.
--- The main important thing, don't use spatula and disturb the mixture. Big surprise is awaiting at the bottom of the pan.
--- All the oil will be floating on top of the mixture, don't panic these oil will be absorbed once upma is cooked.

--- Close the pan and cook the mixture for 10-12 minutes, once cooked take a wooden spatula and mix the upma without touching the bottom of the pan. Shhhh that's the secret, we talked earlier.

--- Now comes the magic. Once the upma is being mixed, the oil which was floating above will get absorbed. This increase the flavour and the taste of the upma.
--- Transfer the upma onto a bowl and now you can see a thick layer, called Kaanthal in tamizh, stuck onto the bottom of the pan.

--- Let the pan to cool for a while. Using the wooden spatula, take the upma which is struck in the bottom of the pan. This is a little work, but your hard work will be paid at the end.
--- You will get a nice crispy, tasty Kaanthal from the bottom.

--- This is the best side dish to eat along with this upma. If you don't want to have crispy part, just mix the recipe  in the first stage itself. Then you will not get the fun tasty crispy upma at the bottom of the pan.

Isn't this upma simple and easy. Enjoy the traditional tasty upma with your family and talk the old stories.


  1. Looks gud ...and it's so new to me ...will try this ..

  2. Super Upma Preetha..Mor milagai pota innum kalakkal daan..Beautiful step-by-step pics!!


  3. Love this morkali upma, makes me nostalgic..

  4. Wow this upma sounds interesting, must try one for me

  5. My god,its my brothers favorite and just now I realized i have never made them and me too liking now!

  6. upma sounds interesting....
    but i do love the crispy part a lot :)

  7. What a lovely recipe,It looks absolutely to follow u!

  8. Morkali is a Hot fav in my home and now with my hubby and children - I use more-molagas too (best part of this dish) but this is the only dish where I don't use turmeric
    Lovely blog and post - Happy to know you better:)


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