I know of a person, who for logical and personal reasons, undergoes strict diet. Whenever I hear her diet, I start feeling hungry!! No not because she has some delicious meals as part of her diet, nor is it that she makes her diet sound appetizing, its just that, the deprivation puts my mind into auto-hunger mode fearing that I would deprive my body the same way (and this even after a full meal!!!!!). All said and done, my hats off to her determination and discipline. To say it and do it are parallel lines and when I see one in flesh and blood actually doing it successfully makes me ashamed sometimes at my so called "will-power" or rather the lack of it - when it comes to dieting ( I suck at it - so finally I gave it up a year back! :) )

An acquaintance of ours, was telling us about how it is difficult for the body to process carbohydrates after noon. So, later the day, the more hard it is. He was telling us about how it would be a good idea to eat all carbs in the beg. of the day and Nada during evening and night.umm! Oh well...Too many calculations and planning as if the weekly Menu that I plan ( which incorporates all the essential nutrients from all quarters of the pyramid) is not enough! I dunno about you - but it takes close to an hour to write down b/f,lunch,snacks and dinner for 7 days keeping all this points in mind!!!!! Anyways, with all this health and balanced diet going on, I planned to cut down on rice (My body is made of rice- cutting it down is like taking out a vital part of the body- got to tell you that ;-)). Anyways, so went for Millet Upma/ Pilaf - call it what you will - along with a hearty tomato and herb dumpling soup! Made a very hearty and nutritious meal and ya well, it dint make me miss rice at all.

  • Cook time:
  • Prep time:
  • Serves: 2 people
  • 1 cup millet
  • 3 spring onions, chopped with white and greens separated
  • 1/2 cup peas (optional)
  • 1 medium red onion
  • 2 garlic, minced
  • approx 1 tsp grated ginger
  • 1 bell pepper, any color ( go for red/yellow - preferable)
  • 1 medium orange
  • 1 tbsp pumpkin seeds
  • 2-3 green chillies ( as per taste)
  • 1 tsp cumin-coriander powder
  • salt n pepper to taste
1. Dry roast the miller in a pan for 4-5 min until you get the toasted smell. Dont make it brown.Set aside

Saute the onions,bell pepper,spring onion whites until soft and then add the toasted millet to it.


Then add 2 1/4 cups of water/vegetable broth. Zest the orange and add it to the broth along with the juice of orange(and peas if using).Season with salt and pepper to taste and close the lid.


Cook until all the water has been absorbed-about 15-20min.


Now remove from heat and gently stir in the spring onion greens along with cilantro for garnish and serve. You can add any number of vegetables of your choice.

Related Posts

Sprouted Ragi Dosa By DK on Jan 14, 2010
Ragi Malt (Porridge) By DK on Jan 10, 2011
Stuffed Millet Bread By DK on Dec 27, 2007
Arisi Upma (Rice Rava Upma) By DK on Nov 20, 2013

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By viji on Dec 22, 2013

Where can i get millet in Qatar. please mention the shop name and location. Thanks.

By praseeda on Dec 6, 2010

Hi I ve been following your blog since quite sometime, U r doing a great job. It tried this upma. but it wouldnt cook at all. The millet remained uncooked on the outside and soft on the inside. I used the cooker even then it did not get cooked. what could be wrong. It was written thenai in the cover, is it not the same millet

I am not really sure since the quality might differ from place to place. Did your packet come with the cooking instructions? Cos mostly they do and you might be able to figure it out. Did yours look like the one depicted in the pic in the post? I wish I was more help but I am not sure what kind you might get in your place.

By praseeda on Dec 5, 2010

hi DK, I have been religiouly following your blog, since quite some time. I tries this upma but the Millet is not getting cooked.I got millet from an indian store here in qatar, it was slightly yellowish brown color. it was written Thenai in it. Are there differnt types of millet?? I was thinking of trying ur millet bread. But now?

By Madhuram on Jun 19, 2009

No it did not pop, or maybe I didn't wait until it popped. I removed the millet from the pan, when it was a little hot.

By Madhuram on Jun 19, 2009

Hi Dhivi, tried it for dinner yesterday night but was able to have it for today's lunch only. I don't know what went wrong, the millet would not cook at all. I too tried with 1 cup measurement and used 2 and 1/4 cups vegetable stock. But it was sort of raw when I had a bite after that water was absorbed, so kept adding another cup of water and then another cup, but it was just absorbing the water and remained like that. It was already late so decided to pressure cook it for today's lunch. I left it for one whistle and it's cooked very good now. Actually I went with pulav style veggies and seasoning, so the taste is real good. Very nice alternative for rice. Maybe I have not toasted enough? This is the first time I'm using millet. It's the yellow ones you have used right? Hey Madhu - yes I used the yellow ones only - I am surprised that this happened. I think it has something to do with the toasting part . The only thing that I can think of (which I have not mentioned..dunno why) is that while toasting, it starts popping, similar to mustard seeds. Not all of them at least few of them, you can actually see it - did that happen for you? Everything else seems to be right with what you said! But even then it is not completely necc per se. Cooking in warm water should have made it soft enough - Thats what I did for Millet Bread - I dint even toast it! May be its the variety in one place to next. Lemme try this again and get back to you

By Pooh on Sep 26, 2008

I have never tried millet! The idea of a pilaf is intriguing!

By Usha on Sep 23, 2008

Good one,loved the use of millet in upma and the orange zest was a neat twist...will give it a try :)

By Swati Raman Garg on Sep 23, 2008

such tempting pics dhivi.. never had millets upma... will try it.. i have never bought millets myself..

By Lisa on Sep 15, 2008

I do enjoy millet! Such a delightful alternative to rice.

By easycrafts on Sep 15, 2008

I too have never cooked anything with whole millet...the dish looks very inviting

By news.linq.in on Sep 15, 2008

It was indeed a hard-Working dish!!

By Hima on Sep 14, 2008

Upma is looking awesome. What a healthy upma dhivya.

By Sunshinemom on Sep 13, 2008

Is the millet skinned? How come they are not red like the ones I find here? The recipe is interesting!

By Sharmi on Sep 12, 2008

hey DK, very nice recipe for the event. makes me think that I too should do something.

By karuna on Sep 12, 2008

wowowo millet umpa, looks delicious. i have an award for u chk it out

By Madhuram on Sep 11, 2008

Ya tell me about meal planning, every Sunday night I sit down with a paper and pen going through various blogs. My husband teases me, I'm so worked up as if preparing for some exam.

I have also not cooked with whole millet before. The upma looks so good and definitely appetizing. Where can I get it?

By saroja on Sep 10, 2008


Hope you are doing great. I have chosen you for "wylde woman award". Congrats :)

Here is the link - http://kitchen-kollections.com/2008/09/05/my-first-ever-award

Keep up the great work! :)


By Siri on Sep 5, 2008

the upma looks so healthy and yummy Dhivs. I esp love the first pic..:)


By Vaishali on Sep 5, 2008

DK, I've never cooked with whole millet before, only with the flour. Thanks for what sounds like a delicious recipe!

By dindintonight on Sep 5, 2008

WOW D! This looks amazing..:-D

By Vanamala on Sep 5, 2008

hey sounds good...diff type...nice

By Bhawana on Sep 5, 2008

hey DK this is really a healthy food. Too good.

By Aparna on Sep 4, 2008

Millet uppuma sounds great. I'm going to try it.
Btw, grains is also the theme for this month's WBB so this would be a nice entry.
P.S. I'm hosting it.:)

By Srivalli on Sep 4, 2008

Dhivi, that picture looks awesome..great!

By Cham on Sep 4, 2008

I can't imagine a diet without a grain of rice :) Ha ha Bee and her veg advice of potato chips , that is the way to end the diet!
Millet upma sounds innovative Gal!

By bee on Sep 4, 2008

try brown rice. it fills you up better and you eat less. or potato chips. they're veggies. :D

By Priti on Sep 4, 2008

U didn't use oil atall..now this is seriously healthy food ..way to go :)