Arisi upma

There are certain foods whose aroma takes you back down memory lane to pleasant and comforting memories. Arisi upma is one such item. By no stretch of the imagination can it be called glamorous, nevertheless, it is a favourite tiffin for many. My mother, amazing cook that she was, could make even the humble arisi upma into a delicacy. This recipe is hers and is for those diehard fans of arisi upma! Posting this at the request of a friend.

Rice – 1 cup 
Tuvar dal – 1/4 cup
Grated coconut – 1 cup 
Small eggplant – 10 (cut into 1 square inch pieces)
Mustard seeds – 1/2 tsp
Urad dal – 1 tsp
Chana dal – 1 tsp
Dried red chillies – 2
Crushed black pepper – 1/2 tsp
Jeera – 1/2 tsp
Asafoetida – a pinch
Oil – 2 tbsp
Ghee – 2 tbsp
Curry leaves – 8-10

Grind the rice till it is like broken rice. Grind the tuvar dal separately in a similar manner. In a kadai heat the oil and add mustard seeds. When it splutters add the jeera, urad and chana dals, red chillies and asafoetida. When the dals are golden brown add the broken tuvar dal and fry well. Add cut eggplant and fry a little. Add grated coconut and curry leaves. Add 2.5 cups of water, crushed pepper and salt and allow the water to boil. Add the broken rice and then transfer to a container to be kept in the pressure cooker. Add the ghee to it before closing the cooker lid. Cook for 3 whistles. Mix gently after removing from the cooker and serve with any chutney or gothsu. Tastes best when it is hot. Serves 3.

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