Thengai paal arisi upma

A recipe that Amma put together after I described the upma I sampled at a wedding. This has full of flavour – the hint of coconut combined with the crunch of the Kaandhal (golden fried bits) and the flavour of spices like pepper and cumin. How many of you love Arisi upma made in vengala paanai / bronze pots?

Ingredients – Rice mix:

  • Rice – 1.5 cups
  • Toor dhal – 2 tbsp
  • Moong dhal – 2 tbsp
  • Pepper – 2 tsp
  • Cumin seeds – 2 tsp
  • Curd – 3 tbsp

Ingredients – Tempering

  • Coconut Oil – 2 tsp
  • Mustard – 1 tsp
  • Urad dhal – 1 tsp
  • Red chillies (broken) – 2
  • Curry leaves – 10
  • Asafoetida – 1/2 tsp

Ingredients – Cooking the Upma

  • Coconut milk – 4 cups (first and second milk combined)
  • Water – 2 cups
  • Salt – to taste

Ingredients – Garnish:

  • Grated coconut – 2 tbsp
  • Coconut oil – 2 tsp


  1. Soak items mentioned under ‘rice mix’ in curd and let it soak for 15-20 mins.
  2. Once this is done, coarse grind the rice mixture in a blender and set aside.
  3. Heat coconut oil in a cooker and temper all ingredients in the same order as given under tempering.
  4. Once it crackles, add the ground rice mix and sauté.
  5. Add coconut milk and water and mix well
  6. Add salt and close the lid of the pressure cooker
  7. Pressure cook for 3-4 whistles (depending on your cooker) Once pressure settles down, open the lid and garnish with fresh grated coconut and coconut oil.
  8. Serve hot with molten ghee, sugar and paruppu thogayal / lentil chutney.


  • Soaking rice and lentils in sour curd is optional. It can be ground as is.

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About Author

The musings of two Chennaiites seeking to discover the world through food and travel. As they open themselves up to adventure, the accompanying puliyogare, travels well and ensures that the idea of home is never lost

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