Saturday, August 13, 2016

Avarekalu Uppit | How to make Hyacinth Beans Upma

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Avarekalu Uppit or Upma is a basic South Indian breakfast made by cooking toasted semolina in a vegetable broth containing boiled Avarekalu or Hyacinth beans.

avarekalu avarekaalu uppit upma hyacinth beans semolina rava suji sooji



I had a nice chat with one of my friend's in the bus yesterday. We were chatting away about food, we are both obsessed foodies and were super hungry by the time we reached halfway, thanks to our little chitter chatter. During our extremely animated food talk, we realized some universal truths:

  •  "What to cook?" is a more exhausting question than actually cooking that "What" on a daily basis
  •  Every Indian mother thinks their children should stop cooking "Special" dishes and learn to make the basic mundane daily food.
Do you agree with me? Or have some more universal truths? Leave me a comment and we can discuss it in length.

avarekalu avarekaalu uppit upma hyacinth beans semolina rava suji sooji

"What to cook next week?" is a regular question I ask myself and the people around me every weekend so I can stock up on the raw material. And pretty much every woman I ask, asks me back the same question. Sigh

And the second point takes me back almost 15 years in time when I was still living with my parents and had recently discovered I love to cook. I'd flip through the magazines at the library and find some new recipe and rush home to try it. And my mom had just the same response my friend's mom had - Learn to cook basic everyday food and then learn the "Specials". 

The wisdom in those words dawned on me much later in life when I moved to Bangalore for a job and had to eat out everyday. I craved for simple home cooked meals like my mom made. So now I balance my simple meals with my special meals. And sometimes, I mix the two.

avarekalu avarekaalu uppit upma hyacinth beans semolina rava suji sooji

This Avarekalu Uppit is my version of special and simple, all combined together. Avarekalu or Hyacinth beans are extremely seasonal and make their appearance for a short time in the winter. Imagine my surprise when I found street vendors selling it at this time of the year. I had to pick them up. Addition of avarekalu made my simple uppit, special for me. 

Avarekalu is a local name for Hyacinth beans. They have a very subtle delicate flavor. In winter, there is a fest dedicated just for Avarekalu in Bangalore where the creativity of the chefs is displayed as they make anything and everything using avarekalu. Ah! Simple special moments in life!!!

Uppit or Upma is a dish usually had for breakfast in South India. It is made my cooking toasted semolina or rava in a vegetable broth. You can make uppit with just onions and tomatoes or load it up with veggies like carrots, peas, green beans, cabbage, capsicum or like in this recipe - Avarekalu. To make a simple Avarekalu Uppit, you can skip all the other vegetables except the avarekalu, onion and the tomato.

avarekalu avarekaalu uppit upma hyacinth beans semolina rava suji sooji

You may also like to check out the recipes for Uppit/Upma or Avarekalu Saaru.


Avarekalu Uppit or Hyacinth Beans Upma


avarekalu avarekaalu uppit upma hyacinth beans semolina rava suji soojiAvarekalu Uppit or Upma is a basic South Indian breakfast made by cooking toasted semolina in a vegetable broth containing boiled Avarekalu or Hyacinth beans.

Recipe Type:  Breakfast
Cuisine:            South Indian
Prep Time:     20 minutes
Cook time:     30 minutes
Yield:                Serves 2

Ingredients:


1 cup Semolina or Rava or Sooji
1/2 cup Avarekalu
1 small Carrot
6-8 Green Beans
1 small Potato
1 Onion
1 small Tomato
1 sprig Curry leaves
1-2 Green Chilli
1/2 tsp Mustard seeds
2.5 cups Water
4-5 tsp Oil
Salt to taste
1 tsp Lemon juice
2 Tbsp finely chopped Coriander leaves for garnish
1 Tbsp grated fresh Coconut for garnish

Method:


In a kadhai or pan, toast the rava for 4-5 minutes on low heat until fragrant.
Chop the onion, beans, carrot, potato, tomato and the chillies.
Heat oil in a kadhai and add the mustard seeds. Once they splutter, add the curry leaves.
Immediately add the onions and green chillies and fry until the onions are translucent.
Add the other vegetables along with the avarekalu to the kadhai and stir for 1-2 minutes.
Add the water and cover and cook until the avarekalu and the beans are cooked.
Add salt.
Add the rava while stirring continuously to avoid forming lumps.
Cover and cook on low heat for 3-4 minutes.
Turn off the heat and allow the uppit to rest for another 5 minutes.
Now add the lemon juice and garnish with coriander and coconut and mix well.
Serve hot.


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