Cook's Hideout: Arisi Upma

February 10, 2015

Arisi Upma

Blogging Marathon# 49: Week 2/ Day 1
Theme: Cooking for 1
Dish: Arisi Upma
I will be 'Cooking for 1' this week. Ever since I started cooking, just cooking for myself has rarely happened. Back in the grad school days, my roomies and I used to cook for the whole gang. After getting married, never got to cook for just 1. But with my husband traveling a lot lately and both the kids in the school, there are days when I have to cook for myself.
Arisi Upma
I try to keep the dishes I make for myself very simple with few ingredients (usually the odds and ends in the fridge) and few dishes to clean. So for the first day, I made this simple and comforting rice upma from Sandhya's blog. The good thing about this dish is it can easily be made for 1 or for 10. A quick and easy dish that takes about 30 minutes from start to finish and needs about 15 minutes of hands on time.

Arisi Upma
My mom makes similar upma but she uses moong dal instead of toor dal. I followed Sandhya's recipe to the T and loved how delicious it turned out. She added peppercorns to the rice & lentil mixture and that gave the dish a nice spicy kick in the background. It tastes great when served hot with some chutney or pickle.

Recipe from Sandhya's blog:
IngredientsServes 1
Rice - ¼cup (I use Sona masoori rice)
Toor dal - 2tbsp
Peppercorns - 4~5
Salt - to taste

For the tempering:
Mustard seeds - 1tsp
Chana dal - 2tsp
Urad dal - 1tsp
Dry Red Chili - 1
Asafoetida/ Hing - ¼tsp
Green Chilies - 1~2
Curry leaves - 8~10

  • First make Rice Rava: Combine rice, toor dal and peppercorns in a wide bowl, sprinkle couple of tablespoons of water over the rice. Rice should be wet but not soaking wet. Mix well with fingers and set aside for 10~15 minutes. After 15 minutes, most of the water will be absorbed by rice and the mixture will feel damp. Don't let the rice get too dry. Grind into a coarse powder. If you prefer a finer upma, then grind longer to form a finer powder.
  • Make Upma: heat 2tsp oil in a medium sauce pan, add the tempering ingredients and once the seeds start to splutter, pour in about 1 cup of water and bring to a boil (adjust the quantity of rice depending on the rice you are using, some rice may need more water to cook).
  • Add salt to the boiling water, mix well and slowly stir in the rice-dal mixture.
  • Bring the mixture to a boil again, now lower the heat to simmer -- cover with a lid. Pour some water on the lid -- this ensures that the upma stays moist.
  • Cook for 15~18 minutes, stirring in couple of times in the middle, or until the rice is cooked through.
  • Serve hot with a chutney or pickle.
Arisi Upma
Lets check out what my fellow marathoners have cooked today for BM# 49


  1. Wow I love this upma Pavani, your pictures are always so sinful and tempting..very nicely done

  2. Pavani, first of all thanks for trying the dish! I was never able to make it like my mother and this year when she visited us, I made her make this upma at least 10 times to get a hang of it. Your picutres have done so much justice to the dish.

  3. I too make it the same way and add some coconut too. This used to be our regular dinner for ekadesi!!!

  4. Delicious looking arisi upma,I too make it for myself for lunch as my H is not a big fan of upmas...

  5. love this so much!!! my fav tiffin..

  6. Ooh comforting dish anytime ;)by the way I think there's a typo in the toor dal proportion pavani . It reads 2 cups instead of May be 2tbsp ?? As the rice is only 1/4 cup

    1. Thanks for catching that Kalyani. I updated the recipe :-)

  7. The Upma looks really good, infact I wish I had read this post before because I made Upma just a little while back. Next time for sure.

  8. Amma makes this for me once in a while, am yet to try it out. Lovely dish Pavani :)

  9. I too have never cooked for me alone. I had even my son by the time I started cooking independently. :)
    I usually go with the store bought rice rava to make this upma. The toor dal-pepper combo definitely makes this dish more interesting.

  10. Trying it out for dinner. Looks yummy.

  11. Wow it looks so good, I will try it for myself.

  12. Lovely upma. The toor dal and pepper in there makes this much more interesting.

  13. My kind of upma, i can survive for many days with this upma, inviting.

  14. My kind of upma, i can survive for many days with this upma, inviting.


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