My dad would often try new recipes at home.. he was the one who introduced us to lauki koftas, home-made chocolate and this sabudhana khichdi among other dishes. He made this sound so simple and since I loved this, I decided to surprise my inlaws with this upma one day and didn't know how to soak the sabudana and soon it became a gooey mess - much to my disappointment. My dad on the other hand would churn out large amounts of the upma effortlessly - where every tapioca pearl would be separate and perfectly cooked.
I tried with several brands of sabudana/tapioca pearls here in the US but it was never satisfactory - my mom said that you need something called nylon sabudana which is not white but colourless... Anyway, all my sabudana woes disappeared when I chanced upon Nupur's microwave recipe - so much easier and the results have never disappointed me - always comes out perfect and finally I have an upma that is close to my dad's version (regardless of the type of sabudana)! (Thank you Nupur and thanks to your mom too for introducing you to this Microwave method). I've posted the fact that I've tried her recipe before but this time I wanted to post the recipe itself since I've made some changes to suit our taste and added a few things that are not traditionally added to this dish which is often eaten when ending a fast - such as onions.
My husband who never took to this initially and would only tolerate it if I fried them like vadas is now a huge fan of this upma... he loves the crunchy peanuts in the dish, I love the chewy tapioca and my son loves the potatoes :) so all in all a winner.
MICROWAVE SABUDHANA KHICHDI
Javvarisi/ Sabudana/tapioca pearls - 1.5 cups (soaking method given below)
Raw/Roasted peanuts (unsalted) - about 1 cup
Potato - 1 big one, peeled & cut into tiny cubes
Onion - 1 small to medium, finely chopped (optional)
G. chillies - 5 to 6, minced finely (adjust to taste)
Ginger - 1 inch piece, minced finely
Cumin seeds - half tsp
Coriander leaves & Grated Coconut - 1 tbsp each (for garnish)
Ghee - 1 tbsp
Oil - 1 tbsp
Sugar - half tsp
Salt - 1.5 tsp (adjust to taste)
1) Wash sabudana, drain then cover with just enough water to cover the pearls. Cover and leave overnight or atleast 6 hours. Fluff gently with a fork.
2) If using raw peanuts, roast at 425F for about 10 minutes and remove he skin. If using already roasted peanuts, skip this step. Once the roasted peanuts have cooled, grind coarsely.
3) Mix the sabudana with the coarsely ground peanuts and set aside.
4) In a strong microwaveable bowl (I used a wide pyrex one), add oil, ghee, cumin seeds, g. chillies, ginger, onion and potato - microwave this for 2 mins. Add a teeny bit of salt and microwave again for a minute or until the potatoes are almost cooked.
5) Add the sabudana, peanuts, salt and sugar and mix well. Cook on high for 2 minutes and allow to rest in the microwave for a minute.
6) Stir and cook- 2 mis on high and rest for a minute or two. Check if done, if not cook for 1 minute intervals until the sabudana is cooked (will look translucent), allowing it to rest for a minute each time after.
7) When done, stir in the coriander leaves and grated coconut (if using). Tasty upma is now ready to serve. This is a very filling, high calorie breakfast.