If I was shakespeare i would write AN ODE TO UPMA or something similar , but since i am not , i will restrict myself to just extolling its virtues , and share a recipe with u guys.
UPMA is the nice guy of breakfasts . There are no fixed ingredients , goes well with everything and tastes good come rain or shine.
so the base is the tadka , or tempering , for about 4 people take two tablespoons of oil (anything except mustard), one teaspoon each of mustard seeds, urad dal, chana dal , a handful of peanuts (small handful , optional ),few curry leaves , a couple of slit green chillies . there is no specific order of adding these ingredients , although u might want to add the mustard seeds first to the hot oil, and the rest of the stuff once they start sputtering .
Then after a minute or so , add any chopped vegetables you like , onions , potatoes, tomatoes , peas , cabbage (washed , peeled , chopped ), are popular options . people have been known to be adventurous and add grated corn , and mushrooms too. ITS MY UPMA AND ILL ADD MUSHROOMS IF I WANT TO, is the spirit . i have never done it , so i dont know , some guy did it and won some hi funda competition in the USA.. But i dont have details on the variety of mushrooms he used.
stir around the veggies , , about one and half cups should be enough , and after a few minutes add a couple of cups of water, a teaspoon(or to taste ) salt and a teaspoon of desi ghee.
when the water is boiling , add 1 cup of sooji rawa(dry roasted before hand )slowly , mixing it all the while .
once the sooji is in , , let it simmer for a minute , switch off the gas and cover the pan , after a few minutes open the lid , garnish with chopped coriander and voila .
serve with ketchup , green chutney , coconut chutney , lemon juice , curds , anything , heck even tabasco sauce , upma doesnt mind.
this is the basic recipe , like i mentioned for four people . feel free to ask questions , in later posts i will share tips for improving your upma and finer points too , like how roasted is roasted and what is the diff between different types of rawa and why some people add dry fruits to their upma and more on why it is the most wonderful breakfast in the world .Till then remember , "i have lived in the same place for 25 years . i just kept making it nicer and nicer"-martha stewart.