Idli Upma

By DK on Jan 23, 2012
South Indian Idli Upma Recipe
This is a simple and easy recipe which every South Indian worth his/her salt would make and for the most simplest of reasons -  leftover idlis! The logic being there would be hot piping idlis for breakfast as a regular feature and then there's bound to be leftovers. This upma is almost always the first thing that comes to mind when there are leftover idlis. Well, not so in my house as I already mentioned here, but nevertheless I make these for myself when the husband has had enough of his idli fries (which is rare, if truth be told!).
South Indian Idli Upma Recipe
This is one of those dishes which doesn't  really deserve a post all for itself, but keeping with the nature of this blog, I thought I might as well. You can add as many vegetables to this or as little. Treat it like a pilaf or treat it like a stir fry. Anything and everything goes (almost).  Mine is a very basic version. You can call it a lazy (wo)man's version cos that's precisely when I make these. Frozen vegetables are a blessing and can be used to their full potential in this. Get the idea and go get creative in the kitchen. Its as accommodating as that. Its great for breakfast, light lunch or a light dinner.

from my kitchen notes

Basic Information
Prep Time: Under 15 min
Cook Time: Under 15 min
Serves: 2 people
  • About 8 medium leftover Idlis (See how to make South Indian Idlis)
  • 1 tsp Idli Chutney Powder, or as per taste (optional)
  • 1 tsp Mustard Seeds
  • 1 tsp Urad Dal (split, skinned Black gram)
  • 1/4 tsp Turmeric powder
  • 1 medium Onion, chopped
  • 1/2 cup boiled peas (or frozen peas)
  • 4-5 Curry leaves
  • pinch Asafoetida
  • 3-4 Cashews
  • Salt to taste
  • Few sprigs Cilantro to garnish
Crumble the idli pieces.
South Indian Idli Upma Recipe
Add the chutney powder to the idli crumble. At times I tend to add some 1 tsp Ghee and the powder to help the powder stick well to the Idlis. Its not really necessary to add it separately but I personally find that adding it first, gives them more flavor. You can skip this step if you do not want it to be spicy, esp. when feeding little kids.
South Indian Idli Upma Recipe
Mix them well until combined.
South Indian Idli Upma Recipe
In a skillet, add 1 tsp Ghee/oil. When hot, add the mustard seeds. When it starts popping, add the Urad dal, cashew pieces and curry leaves.
South Indian Idli Upma Recipe
Next add in the onion and cook until soft. If you are using frozen peas (like I did), add the peas along with the onions. Helps to thaw and cook along with the onions. If boiled, you can add it towards the end.
South Indian Idli Upma Recipe
When the onion and peas are cooked, add salt, turmeric and asafoetida. Cook for 2-3 minutes.
South Indian Idli Upma Recipe
Add the crumbled idlis to the onion-peas mixture.
South Indian Idli Upma Recipe
Mix until combined, reduce the heat and cook for another few minutes (about 5-6min)  with a closed lid so that the idli can absorb the flavors.
South Indian Idli Upma Recipe
Serve it hot, garnished with cilantro. South Indian Idli Upma Recipe
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10 Responses to “Idli Upma”
  1. nitin sonawane
  2. thank u I like this receipe :-P :-P

  3. jaz

    wow, that’s really creative. I’m going to try it. :-)

  4. Courtney Desormeaux

    This looks really yummy. Seems like I might have a hard time finding some of the ingredients though. Never made Indian food before.

  5. tanarit1

    I wonder if this can be made from a regular white bread, sort of like Indian-flavored stuffing?

  6. Nice dish :) …it is regular dish in my kitchen

  7. My fav it.

  8. Dhivi, I don’t know if you have tried out this method of crumbling the idlis. I store the idlis in the fridge, then cut each idli into quarters and then pulse it in the mixie for short durations. The idli powders so beautifully without any lumps. I follow the same method for preparing usili too.

    Oh I actually have, not intentionally though! But sounds like a good idea. Will do it next time around Madhu

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