Semiya upma

This week is probably the first week of ‘summer’ in Seattle. We in the Northwest are probably one of the last places to get good sunny weather, and it was evident how people yearn for such good weather. I shouldn’t complain much, for we didn’t have a bad winter. Compared to other places in the United States, the temperatures in winter weren’t that bad, and we didn’t have any snow. Any way, to celebrate the good weather, my 10 month old son and I went for a long walk today. He enjoyed it more than I did, and we walked via the park to the library to get some books. All in all, it was almost dinnertime when we got home.

I had this Bambino roasted vermicelli on hand and quickly prepared this Semiya upma for dinner today. I remember an ad for Bambino vermicelli, where a kid opens his tiffin box and has this upma. I loved that ad. There are certain ads that came on TV when I was a kid, that I remember really well: Rasna, Maggi noodles, Thondaiyil kichkich – Vicks, Iodex – ah ooh ouch. Reminiscing about things like these is fun. If you are a reader of my blog, comment on some of your favorite ads from childhood.


1/2 pack of roasted vermicelli – about 3 cups

1 1/2 cups of frozen mixed vegetables

1/2 onion chopped

1 garlic clove sliced

1 tomato chopped

5 green chillies slit

1/2 tsp of turmeric

2 tbsp oil

1/2 tsp mustard

1/2 tsp split urad dal

1 tsp channa dal

1/2 tsp cumin seeds

curry leaves

cilantro chopped

salt to taste


Heat oil in a wide pan, over medium high heat. Add the mustard. When it splutters, add the split urad dal and channa dal. When the dals turn golden brown, add the cumin seeds. Then, add the onion and slit green chillies. Saute, until the onion turms a golden brown. Add the turmeric powder and the tomatoes. Salt the mixture to bring out the water from the tomatoes and to soften them. Add the frozen mixed vegetables, and toss to combine. You could add fresh vegetables: such as chopped carrots, beans, bell peppers etc. I used frozen since I was short on time. Add 5 1/2 cups of water(package directions were 2 cups water for 1 cup of vermicelli). Bring the water to a boil. Lower to medium, and add the vermicelli. Cook until the water is absorbed and the vermicelli is cooked well. If you find the vermicelli is lumping or sticking to one another(which it shouldn’t, since it is the roasted variety), drizzle another tsp or so of oil, and it should fix itself.

Verdict: I enjoyed the upma with my favorite ‘Mango ginger’ pickle and a dollop of yogurt. This is quick, easy and filling comfort food. DH enjoyed it too. He always has any kind of upma with sugar, even Maggi. I think it is an insult to the spicy flavor of the dish itself to eat it with sugar. I’ve been trying to convert him, but in vain. You win some, you lose some! No matter what condiment, we both agreed on the yumminess of the dish. In the end, thats all that matters. 🙂

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One Comment

  1. too good piece of information, I had come to know about your site from my friend veni, bangalore,i have read atleast 11 posts of yours by now, and let me tell you, your web-page gives the best and the most interesting information. This is just the kind of information that i had been looking for, i’m already your rss reader now and i would regularly watch out for the new post, once again hats off to you! Thanks a lot once again, Regards,
    Semiya upma

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