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Moms of Kids Baking Championship Season 6: Indian Upma Recipe from Indu

Below are the original notes from the recipe Indu uses, with my own modifications added since I made a bigger batch to feed 6 of us, which includes 3 hungry men.  :)
(Plus you know me, I'm always playing with recipes!)  This has a little spicy bite to it but not too much, it's just bursting with delicious flavor.
Servings: 6 servings
Author: Indu via Kelly the Kitchen Kop

Ingredients

  • 4 Tablespoons oil I used sesame oil
  • 2 teaspoons mustard seed I used 2 Tablespoons
  • 1 teaspoon chana dal/split chickpeas optional (Indu didn't use these and neither did I)
  • 1 Tablespoon lentils <-- those are the ones I used but I used a little less than Indu because I don't love them -- I can't seem to get them to soften?
  • 2 dried red chilis I found a bag of them at the store
  • A few curry leaves <-- those are the ones I used I threw in about 6 of them
  • Optional: 1 teaspoon cumin/jeera but Indu didn't use this and I liked it without too -- I loved the Indian taste of this dish and think cumin would make it taste more like a Mexican dish.
  • 2 teaspoons ghee/clarified butter I used 3 Tablespoons because oh how I love my healthy fats, especially this kind of ghee
  • 1/2 onion finely chopped
  • 2 inches ginger root peeled and finely chopped (or 2 teaspoons dried)
  • 3 green chili peppers or poblano peppers very mild on the heat scale, finely chopped -- Indu just cuts them open down the middle
  • 6 cups water I used bone broth for extra nutrition, but Indu's family is vegetarian so they use water
  • 1 teaspoon sugar I used a bit more
  • 1 teaspoon salt I used sea salt and more like 2-3 teaspoons
  • 2 cups cracked wheat/bulgar <-- that's the kind I used
  • Juice of 1 organic lemon
  • 4 Tablespoons of chopped cilantro/coriander

Instructions

  • I made this in my big 16" frying pan.  (Read more about my FAVORITE pan here or you can snag one here.)  Indu made it in a large skillet on the stove.  The amounts below are enough to fill my 16" pan and fed all 6 of us with just a little bit of leftovers, but we ate it as a side dish for dinner with some chicken.  As I said, Indu's family eats it for breakfast.
  • Heat the oil, mustard seed, optional chickpeas, lentils, red chili, curry leaves, and optional cumin.
  • Sauté until the mustard seeds pop a little, then add in ghee, onion, ginger, and split green chilis and sauté well.
  • Pour in water/broth and bring to a boil as you stir in the sugar, and salt.
  • Keeping the heat on low and slowly add in the cracked wheat, stir continuously to prevent lumps from forming until mixed well.  Cover and simmer on low heat for 10-15 minutes or longer until the grain is cooked well and completely soft (taste-test to be sure).  Stir occasionally and keep the heat high enough so it bubbles but don't let it burn.  It'll sort of have the consistency of a very well-cooked rice dish.  You'll LOVE the wonderful flavors.
  • Before serving, stir in the lemon juice and cilantro.
  • Let me know what you think!  By the way, get someone to help you with the chopping and the time it takes to actually whip up this recipe is pretty fast.