Arisi Upma – Cream of Rice Upma

Growing up, I was not hot for arisi upma. But, like so many other foods, I now appreciate the humbleness and simplicity of this dish. Back in the days, this upma is prepared in a bronze pot (vengala paanai). The slightly burnt upma stuck to the bottom of the pot is to die for. Fast forward to present, this is made in a kadai, pressure cooker or rice cooker. I find the rice cooker version easy. Switch on the cooker and dinner is ready in 20 mintues.

Arisi Upma - Cream of Rice Upma

Back in India, my mom would visit the flour mill once a month, give the operator at the mill a bag of rice and make a batch of rice flour and another batch of rice rava. But here, in the city where I live, there is no flour mill that I know of. But when I set off to make some rice rava, most of it becomes flour. Despaired, I gave up making rice rava upma.

But this time when I visited India, I observed my MIL soaking her rice before grinding. The soaked rice is not only easy to work with, but also yields uniform rava instead of turning into flour. Now, am back into action :).

Ingredients

Raw rice – 1 cup
Toor dal – 1 fistful
Coconut – 1/3 cup, grated
Mustard seeds – ½ tsp
Urad dal – 1 tsp
Chana dal – 1 tsp
Pepper – ½ tsp
Cumin seeds – 1 tsp
Red chillies – 4 to 6
Curry leaves - few
Salt
Oil – 1 tbsp

Method

Wash rice and dal together thrice and drain the water completely. Leave it for 20-30 minutes. Take this mixture in a food processor/mixie and pulse for 2 or 3 times. The rice should be coarsely ground, but not as fine as rava (semolina). This will yield about 1¼ cups of rice rava which serves two.

Transfer the ground rice to a rice cooker. In a seasoning pan, heat oil, splutter mustard seeds. Add chana dal, urad dal, red chillies, pepper, cumin seeds and curry leaves, in that order. When dal becomes brown, add this seasoning mixture to rice. Also add coconut, salt and 2½ cups of water. Mix well and turn the rice cooker switch on. When done, fluff the rice, let rest for 5 minutes and serve with a drizzle of coconut oil, if desired.

IMHO, arisi upma is best had with sambar, followed by gothsu. I make sure there is left-over sambar whenever I make this upma for dinner. Today, I served it with onion sambar and coconut+coriander leaves chutney.

Arisi Upma - Cream of Rice Upma

Recently, I came across idli rava in Indian stores. Though I have never tried it, I believe it may work well in this recipe. I like making my own rice rava, so that I can control how big I want it to be. Also, toor dal in the above recipe is optional, if you want a totally white upma.

Here are some guidelines for using water in various upma. Of course, the ratio depends on the hardness of the water you use.

Rice rava upma – 1 cup of rice rava : 2 cups of water
Rava/Sooji upma – 1 cup of rava : 1½ cups of water
Vermicelli upma – 1 cup of vermicelli : 1 cup of water

This might be a humble dish, but it is one of those recipes that makes best use of rice, in my opinion. So this is my entry for JFI-Rice, hosted by Sharmi of Neivedhyam. JFI is an event conceived by Indira of Mahanandi.

50 comments:

Madhu said...

hi Suganya,
Beautiful texture you have there, its hard to make this with idly rava, i have tried it once it was very sticky. I too prefer home made rice rava. Nice entry for JFI.

bhags said...

thats a wonderful entry for the event...its a new style of upma for me....

Priya said...

Even I did not like upma(but loved the upma kozhakattai) or pongal when I was at home. And now cravings hit and I find myself in the kitchen making them !! The same with avial too... Lovely entry to the event

bee said...

is there a variety of rice you like to use? for sooji upma, we use 1 cup sooji to 2.5 cups water.

WokandSpoon said...

Gorgeous photos! I've never heard of this dish but it's one that I definitely want to try!

Vcuisine said...

Nice entry Suganya. Viji

Sia said...

gorgeous pic as usual. i too loved that burnt upma and we kids compete for it. simple pleasures of life...

lakshmi said...

this is one dish i cook when i feel lazy :D - my mother in law routinely makes me a full dabba of "arasi upma" mix - rice rava, coarsely ground toor dal, cumin, pepper corns and salt.

so all that lazy me does is splutter mustard seeds, channa dal and urad dal, saute onions, add the mix and water.

will definitely add coconut and try sometime.

btw idli rava may not always work well - in my experience idly rava in some stores will give you gooey upma.

indosungod said...

Looks colorful and ofcourse beautiful as usual. Comfort food at its best.

Latha Narasimhan said...

Nice upma suganya! you have given a beautiful name, cream of rice upma!
Nice entry for the event!

Gini said...

Trust you to make upma look sexy.

Nupur said...

Thank you for the detailed instructions! The rice upma does look like a delicious and quick meal.

Laavanya said...

I love arisi upma Suganya - yours looks so good. Thanks for the tip about soaking it before grinding will try this soon.

Rajitha said...

so you wait till the end of the month, sothat you go ahead and make something different and yummy... i get it now ;)

and ur photos are beautiful... as usual! i think from now i'm going to just add PIA (Photo is Amazing)in every post i make

TBC said...

I have never been a big upma-eater though I do make it. I would love to taste some of yours along with that chutney & sambar(?)

Suganya said...

Madhu, Thx for the info. I have never tried idli rava.

Bhags, Thanks.

Priya, Upma kozhakattai smeared in molaga podi is my fav lunch box menu. Avial is all time fav.

Bee, I use the usual ponni raw rice that I use for everyday cooking. The water ratio is what my mom taught me. May be its the sooji that we use. Also, my water is very hard.

W&S, This is simple and everyday meal that doesnt call for any special ingredient. You can definitely give this a try.

Thank you Viji.

Sia, When am home, then its only me and the burnt upma. But when I am at my Granny's house there is a fight among us, cousins, to get to the bottom. We will make our granny to serve us from the bottom up :)

Lakshmi, I too was the same lazy daughter you were. But when upma rava stock goes empty, I had to go to these extreme measures. Its been 2 yrs since I have been to India. Most of my stock has depleted :(

ISG, you are right. This is comfort food.

Thank you Latha Maami. Cream of rice, that is how idli rava is sometimes labeled here, in Indian stores.

A poor man's meal like upma made sexy? Gini, C'mon.

Nupur, I took a long time to compose this post with all the details, so that newbies can try this too. It is, after all, darn simple.

Rajitha, Waiting till end of the month is correct. Its called procrastination :D.

TBC, then you have to try this. After a long day of shopping, hot upma waiting for you in the rice cooker is a comforting feeling. Trust me!

Sandeepa said...

Pretty, pretty, pretty....I would just frame it and put it on my walls.

Raaga said...

Looks lovely... Amma has just ground some rice rava from the mill for me :-)

sra said...

That's beautiful - have only ever eaten arisi upma in canteens, not great.

Godzown said...

hey Suganya,This really is a good looking blog!!pics taken so well!!
which camera do u use?

Manjula said...

Thats a delicious dinner. Good tip to use broken rice rather than rice rava. What is 'Arisi'?,rice?
Superb pictures, they go so perfectly with the template.

marriedtoadesi.com said...

Nice recipe, I have never had this before.

Kanchana

Sharmi said...

what a beautiful presentation. My grandmom used to make this. it looks so nice. I have never had them with such delicious chutney. thanks for the great one.

Poonam said...

Suganya, that looks so perfect! Picture is beautiful!

musical said...

I love Arisi upma!! Upmas are my favorite, but this one has a special place in my heart.....courtesy a very dear friend, who once very lovingly made it for me! Your post brought back those warm memories.....

and great instructions for making rice rave at home!

Latha said...

Delicious Arisi Upma! Its been ages since i ate this, should have my mom make some! Thanks for the yummy reminder Suganya!

Manasi said...

Ur pix can make even the simplest dishes look glamourous!!!

Tee said...

Simple and Elegant! This certainly is a great rice recipe :)

Nags said...

i am not a fan of upma but ur pics are so perfect! love them!! err... i think i say this each time i comment.. sorry if its sounding lame :D but i DO mean it. i DO i DO!

archana said...

This is something nice.Pictures are marvelous :) Good entry :)

Rasa Malaysia said...

Your rice is so pretty and colorful. :)

Bharathy said...

....No back pinch please!!LOL..

How did I ever miss this one!

What a beauuuuutiful upma!...with more spices!..

The brown layer sticking under the vengala panai(maandu) is usually reseved for my better half..(as you said.. he will write away his whole property for this):)I let it remain in sim with an extra tbsp of oil for more than 45 minutes..

Rachna said...

hey comment got gobbled up :(

i was saying...your rice upma is new to me.... will def try it

Padma said...

I loved the texture to the rice rava. Loved, Photos are beautiful as usual, such an elegant dish!

ushaprashanth said...

Hi suganya!
I too love the last part of the upma from the kadai.The guidelines will really help the beginners!!Good entry for the event!

Cynthia said...

I swear, food has never looked as good as they do on your blog.

Puspha said...

Ur upma looks fabulous.

Kajal said...

WOW.....Looks very delicious my dear. What a clear photo. Nice entry for JFI-rice event.

Anita said...

I remember having this from a classmates tiffin a very long time ago! I am so happy to have a recipe now.

Suma Gandlur said...

Suganya,
Upma looks so fabulous. I have never tried making upma with rice rava. The main problem is I don't have a good Indian mixer.
Next time, I have to try sugar snap pea saute.
Loved your fruity butter idea as well.

SeeC said...

The Best arisi upma ever. Presentation is great !!!

Linda said...

Your photos get lovlier and lovlier, Suganya. I have to tear away from them to read the recipe! Upma looks great, so colorful and I'm sure flavorful too. And being a sambhar addict I would love to know how you made this yummy-looking version sometime :)

ServesYouRight said...

Lovely picture!! Cream of rice upma - so creative!!!

Smita

Apple said...

Thanks for visiting my blog...Rice rava Upma looks gorgeous..Picture perfect!

Shankari said...

I love arisi upma, but not oncce have I asked my mom for the recipe, now I have yours :)

easycrafts said...

Hi, even i make the same using microwave too. And jaggery also goes well with it.

SMN said...

Hi Suganya,

Lovly blog and great pics! loved the reciepe too.. will give it a try.

Siri said...

Suganya - I made this for dinner today with some sambhar. It tassted divine and all of my family members liked it. Thanks for the recipe. I will post it on my blog soon..for MBP.

Siri

Anonymous said...

Hi Suganya,

Simple and easy one...

Thanks for the dish preparation procedure..

Thanks..Sangee..

Mangala Bhat said...

Hi Suganya ...!st time here what a wonderful recipes u have ..lovely ..Awsome clicks .:)Happy blogging

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