While Uppumma can be made with a variety of base ingredients (rava, noodles, chopped up idlis, etc.), the base ingredient used most commonly is Rava (aka Semolina, Sooji). The prep is pretty easy.
- Start by measuring out one cup of rava into a heated pan or pot. Rava tends to be close to white. Roast it till it is golden brown (hope you can see the "before and after" difference in the pix above.) PUT IT ASIDE on a dry plate. Roasting the Rava ensures that you don't end up with a soggy mess at the end of the process!
- Heat about two teaspoons of oil in the pot, and flavor it when hot with a pinch of mustard seeds.
- Chop 1/2 an onion into small cubes. Fry the onions in the oil till they are slightly browned.
- Toss in about 1 cup of mixed veggies, peas or broccoli flowerets. Cook for about 5 minutes
- Add 2 cups of water to the mix, and bring it to a boil. You might also mix it up a bit, replacing 1 cup of water with chicken broth (1 cup water, 1 cup broth.) Using only broth may overpower the dish a bit. Note: Don't be startled by all the roiling and bubbling you'll have when you pour in the liquid into the heated veggies. It's normal....
- Flavor the mix with a teaspoon of salt and a pinch of pepper.
- Once the mixture comes to a constant boil, reduce the flame to medium or low, and evenly pour in the rava, continuing to stir.
- The Rava will soak up the liquid in about 2 to 4 minutes, and is ready to serve!
- OPTIONAL: Ghee is a great way to flavor Uppumma. One option is to start with two teaspoons of Ghee. If you're worried about the fattening effects of Ghee (I do!), you can avoid it OR you can just pop a teaspoon of it into the dish while the rava is soaking in the liquids.