Monday, August 29, 2011

Sooji Upma | Rava Uppittu | Uppindi

After two and half years of blogging I am posting a simple upma recipe which sounded bit funny to me,but its always better to be late than never.I have realized recently that I have only kharabath recipe in my blog and I never posted basic upma recipe.If you think that making upma is easy then you are absolutely wrong,making upma is easy but making a good non-sticky tasty upma is an art.
I remember we used to call Upma as 'Concrete' during our childhood might be because of its texture and is not liked by many.As a kid I never used to like upma and of course I did not touch it for 21 years and my mom always had to make something else for me as I never used to eat upma.But things change and now I have realized that making upma is so easy,quick and convenient dish and when it is made properly one can enjoy piping hot simple upma like a gourmet meal.I got to know few tips and techniques over experience to make tasty upma and now I can say I thoroughly enjoy upma either as a quick breakfast or dinner.This post might sound silly for my blogger friends,but let me tell you that this recipe is aimed only for beginners in cooking and also for bachelors who looks for simple n yummy recipes.

Sooji Upma Recipe:
(serves 2)


1 cup Sooji/Rawa
2 medium Onions,sliced
3-4 Green chillies,slit
1/4 cup grated fresh Coconut
2 tbsp chopped fresh Coriander
1/2" Ginger,chopped
a sprig of Curry leaves
8-10 Cashew nuts,broken
1 tbsp Lemon juice
1 tbsp Chana dal
2 tsp Urad dal
1/2 tsp Mustard seeds
2-3 tbsp Oil
1 tbsp Ghee
  • Dry roast rawa(sooji) in a kadai until the nice aroma starts from it.Remove it from the pan and let it cool.You can even roast rawa in a tsp of ghee which also gives a nice flavor to upma.
  • Heat oil in a thick aluminium kadai(which is ideal for making upma) or non-stick kadai and crackle mustard seeds.
  • Add chana dal,cashew nuts and urad dal and roast until they turn golden brown.
  • Add slit green chillies,chopped ginger and curry leaves and fry them until they wilt.
  • Add sliced onions and fry them until they are pink in color.
  • Mean while boil 3 cups of water(1c rawa:3c water) in another vessel until it reaches the boiling point.
  • Pour the hot boiling water into the upma kadai where onions are fried and let it boil again.
  • Add required amount of salt to it.
  • Now pour the rawa with one hand and keep stirring with another hand using a ladle,make sure you make this process very quickly otherwise you will end up having lumpy upma.
  • Once everything is mixed,keep the lid on and cook it on low flame for 2-3 mins.
  • Add ghee,coriander,grated coconut and lemon juice to it and mix well.
  • Cover it and let it sit for 4-5 mins before you serve.
Serve it hot with some boondi/chips/cucumber and coconut chutney.

  1. Roasting the rawa ensures that the upma will not become sticky,so do not skip this step.
  2. Boiling the water separately and adding it to upma is also another key step to get nice and soft upma.
  3. If you want the upma to be very soft add 1c rawa:3c water,if you want it bit dry then add it in the ratio of 1c rawa:2 1/2 c water.
  4. You can add extra ghee while serving it.
  5. For a vegan version avoid ghee in the recipe.
  1. You can add vegetables like finely chopped carrots,beans,capsicum,cabbage and fresh peas while frying onions to make it mixed vegetable upma.
  2. You can add fresh and tender avarekaalu while frying onions to make it avarekalu uppitu,do not miss to make this in avarekaalu season as it adds a very nice flavor to upma.
  3. Instead of regular sooji you can use bansi(kesar) rawa or lapsi(wheat rawa) and follow the same recipe.If using Lapsi add water in the ratio 1c rawa:2 1/2 c water.Bansi rava upma tastes very nice instead of regular rawa.

Wednesday, August 24, 2011

Chinese Veg Hakka Noodles

Chinese cuisine is like a love-hate relationship to me,I love Chinese if it is done properly otherwise I would not even think of taking second bite of it.The authentic Chinese food is loaded with lots of flavor and the crunchiness of vegetables is maintained which makes every bite delicious. I generally avoid eating Chinese food in all restaurants as it involves liberal usage of oil and also the MSG added in it to make it delicious,though I can ask them not to add MSG to food but I cannot control the usage of oil in it.The best option for me is to recreate the restaurant style Chinese food at home where I can control all these factors and still enjoy the taste of it.Sesame oil is the best option to use in Chinese cooking as the oil has a nutty flavor in it and that is why it is used in authentic Chinese cooking.But for health freaks Olive oil is the best alternative as a few more tbsps of Olive oil does not hurt us much when compared to any other oil.I strongly recommend either sesame oil or olive oil than using any other oil in Chinese cooking as they enhance the flavor of Chinese food.

Coming to today's recipe,Hakka noodles is one of the most popular and favorite dish of Indo-Chinese cuisine and is very popular among all the age groups especially with the kids.This is one of my most favorite Indo-Chinese dishes which I order regularly in Chinese joints.It is even popular among the road side eateries and is generally served along with Gobi manchurian which is equally famous and also a very nice combo.

Chinese Hakka Noodles Recipe:
(Serves 2)

1 pack(200 gms) Vegetarian Hakka Noodles
1" Ginger,julienne into thin strips
3-4 Garlic pods,finely chopped
1 tsp ground Black pepper/White pepper
1 tsp dark Soya sauce
1/2 tsp white Vinegar
1 tsp Green chilli sauce(optional)
4-5 tbsp Olive oil
Salt to taste

veggies needed:
1 cup finely shredded Cabbage,lengthwise
1 big Carrot,julienne into thin strips
1 Capsicum,julienne into thin strips
12-15 French beans,thinly sliced diagonally
6-8 Spring onions,whites-sliced thin;greens-finely chopped

  • Bring 7-8 cups of water to a boil in a pan and add salt and a tsp of regular oil to it and add hakka noodles and cook according to the instructions.The noodles should hold its shape and firm to bite,this process should take 8-10 mins.Keep an eye at the end so that the noodles will not become soggy.
  • Drain the noodles in a colander and pour cold water over it and wash the starch completely from the cooked noodles,this helps in retaining non-sticky noodles.
  • Heat olive oil in a big wok over a high flame and then add ginger strips and chopped garlic and saute it well.
  • Add finely sliced spring onion whites and shredded cabbage and fry in high flame.
  • Add julienne carrots,beans and fry well until they are half cooked.Take care not to loose the crunch of vegetables,they should be firm to bite.
  • Add capsicum strips to it and toss it again.
  • Add salt,pepper powder,soya sauce,vinegar,green chilli sauce and fry for a minute.
  • Add cooked noodles and chopped spring onion greens and toss well until it is mixed properly and toss on high flame.
Serve it hot with any manchurian gravy side dish or tomato sauce.

  • The entire process would be done under 8-10 mins,so be quick while sauteing the vegetables and noodles and also take care not to loose the crunchiness of vegetables.
  • You can use white pepper powder or black pepper powder and it is preferred to use freshly ground black pepper in the recipe.
  • Be liberal in using oil as it helps the noodles not to turn sticky and in Chinese cooking it is always advisable to use more oil.
  • I have used olive oil in the recipe as it gives a nice flavor and even the liberal usage of olive oil does not hurt me as the normal oil does.If you do not have olive oil in hand the best substitute for olive oil is sesame oil in Chinese cooking as sesame oil is primarily used in Chinese cooking as the oil itself has nutty flavor which enhances the taste of Chinese dishes.
  • In Chinese cooking ajinamoto(tasting salt) is added for extra taste,I do not use it in my cooking and hence not mentioned in the recipe.If you are using it,add 1/2 tsp of ajinamoto while adding salt and sauces to the wok.
  • You can even add chopped celery to it which gives very nice flavor to the noodles.
  • You can even add bokchoy(Chinese greens) while sauteing the other vegetables.
  • You can add 2-3 tbsp of schezwan sauce along with other sauces and toss it to make Schezwan noodles.Adjust the spiciness according to your taste.
  • You can add red chilli paste along with other sauces and also add 2 tbsp finely chopped garlic in the recipe to make Chilli Garlic noodles.Reduce the amount of vegetables in the recipe and also avoid green chili sauce in the recipe.
I am sending this entry to Pari's 'ONLY-Pasta/Noodles/Pizza' event which is guest hosted by

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