This is yet another breakfast recipe, one that has been made in our family for generations together. It is a Maharashtrian dish that is quite popular in Gujarat, too. My Paati learnt how to make this upma from one of her Maharashtrian friends, and this is one of the dishes that she went on to teach my mother, her daughter-in-law. Amma, in turn, taught it to me. This is a favourite breakfast at our place and gets made often, considering how much the OH and I love it.
It is pretty simple to make, and tastes super delicious. It is loaded with the health benefits of corn, and uses very little oil too. What more do you need from breakfast?
I am sure there are other ways to prepare this upma, but today, I will tell you about ‘our’ recipe – the way this dish has always been prepared in our house.
Ingredients (serves 2):
About 10 corn cobs (the desi, non-sweet version)
Salt, to taste
A small bunch of coriander leaves, finely chopped
About 4 tablespoons of sugar, or to taste
3 green chillies, slit
Red chilli powder, to taste
1 teaspoon turmeric powder
2 tablespoons oil
1 teaspoon mustard seeds
A pinch of asafoetida
Juice of 1 lemon, or to taste
2-3 tablespoons of milk (Raw or boiled, doesn’t really matter)
- Peel the corn cobs and remove the fibres from them. Now, grate them coarsely using the large holes on a grater. Ideally, you should get a mixture that is not too slushy, with a few whole corn kernels.
- Heat the oil in a deep-bottomed pan and add the mustard seeds. Allow them to splutter. Add the asafoetida and slit green chillies. Let them stay in for just a few seconds.
- Now, add the grated corn to the pan, along with salt and red chilli powder to taste, sugar, milk, and turmeric. Mix well. Turn the flame to medium, and cook the mixture for about 5 minutes.
- Now, add the finely chopped coriander leaves. Mix well. Cook for a minute or so more on medium heat. Switch off the gas.
- Add lemon juice and mix well.
- Serve hot.
1. Desi corn works best for this recipe, rather than sweet corn. Sweet corn turns into a slush when you grate it for the upma, whereas the desi version does not. You get a much better texture of upma, therefore, when you make it with desi corn. That said, if you must make it with American/ sweet corn, make sure you use cobs that are not overly fresh and tender. Also, ensure that you reduce the quantity of sugar you use in the dish, in that case.
2. When you cook the grated corn, it shrinks drastically in size. So, using 10 medium-sized cobs of corn will give you enough upma to serve 2. Grating the corn can be a tiresome task, indeed, but then, trust me when I say the final product will be entirely worth all the effort that you put into the grating!
3. If you feel the upma is too dry, you could add a bit more milk while adding the coriander leaves. The milk is a must in this upma – it gives the dish a lovely taste and texture.
4. You could add more finely chopped green chillies and omit the red chilli powder totally.
You like? I hope you will try this dish out too, and that you will love it just as much as we do!