Saturday, January 8, 2011

Javvarisi Upma (Tapioca pearls Stir Fry) Sabudana Khichdi

The first time I saw upma made with tapioca pearls I was surprised because in my mind at least it was reserved as a dessert ingredient.

Tapioca pearls are easy to deal with when they are used in say a payasam or a pudding but in something like an upma they have to be separate and not be mushed together. This is going to happen only after a few mishaps. So be prepared.

One of my co-workers is a Gujarati and lives with her in-laws. She seems to be fasting a few times a week - for someones who does not fast at all it seems an awful lot. Sabudana Khichdi as she calls it is a fasting food, so she brings this often for lunch and after tasting a few time asked her for the recipe. The part I failed to listen or she failed to mention was the time to soak the tapioca and the amount of water to use in the soaking. I would consider this to be the most important step in this whole recipe.

On my first attempt I soaked the tapioca pearls in twice the amount of water and almost let it sit overnight. Yes exactly! It was a disaster and the resulting mush would have been great for starching clothes. Alas! I did not have the need.

I asked again and did some googling and got the general idea.

Before moving on to the recipe I have a question for all of you readers.
When looking for a job or changing job how much importance would commute time have in making the decision? Let me know.

Javvarisi Upma - Tapioca Pearls Stir Fry
1. 2 Cups of tapioca pearls
2. 1 Potato chopped fine about 1/4 - 1/2 cup
3. 3 tbsp of roasted peanuts
4. 2 red chilies broken and seeds removed
5. 2 tsp red chili powder
6. 1/2 tbsp of lemon juice
7. seasonings - curry leaves, mustard seeds and cumin seeds
8. salt to taste
9. 2 tsp of oil
10. coriander leaves

1. Soak the tapioca pearls in 2 cups of water for about 2 hours and drain out the excess water. The tapioca pearls were still not translucent at this point. So I brought another 2 cups of water to boil and put the pearls into it and let it sit for 15-20 minutes and drain the water completely and set aside
2. In a pan heat the oil and add the seasonings followed by the red chilies
3. Add the potatoes 1 tbsp of water and let it cook but not too soft
4. Now add the peanuts and chili powder and give it a good mix
5. Add the tapioca pearls and mix it well
6. Add the lemon juice, coriander leaves and salt
7. Cover the pan and in very low flame let it remain in the heat for 4-5 minutes
8. Switch off the heat and let it sit for 5 minutes before opening the lid and fluffing it up.

Great for breakfast or even as a snack.


  1. Indo, Javvarisi is lit bit tricy , it depends on the type and size too.
    To your question on the commute, I do not work so really cannot say for sure but believe the less time to commute the more family time you will get.

  2. Looks simple and quick. I made your thakkali kuzhambu for dosai this morning and it turned out great. Thanks for the recipe.

  3. Very right ISG .. it is only after a few mishaps that we get the idea. I've had my share of mishaps too. :-)
    The khichdi looks great!

  4. I used to get this breakfast often working in Delhi, staying with a Marathi neighbor. Gets messy and sticky at times with the starch in the sabudana. Sprinkled with roasted peanuts it tasted heavenly.

  5. Yumm!! My favourite!!

  6. I always related these zith dessert, never knew we could make upma, looks yumm

  7. want to try this for a long time..but I feel the same as you that javarisi is a dessert ingredient, never taste Uppuma or any other savoury version. May be I will try yours and see..:)

  8. I like sabudana khichdi and yet to try it myself..looks tempting this one

  9. this is my favourite and the pic looks droolworthy ! I don't work but can safely say less the commute time, more the family time !

  10. I guess I didnt reply to your question, well i dont work so i really cant commemt but then if i was looking for a job i would keep in mind the distance one has to travel every day i would say shorter the better as then you can leave home late as you only have to travel less and come home early too.

  11. Commute time is of utmost importance to me- because it is "dead time" lost twice a day, 5 days a week for most commuters. Unless you knit or read or listen to language tapes or NPR or otherwise do something fun and productive during the commute! Currently my commute is 20-25 minutes door to door using public transport and my own two legs and I LOVE it.

    My dream job would be where I can "telecommute" and work in my PJs ;)

  12. Thats a delicious upma, yet to try..

  13. Hey Indo.. Happy New Year. Have a lot of your posts to catch up with. I love Sabudana Khichdi. Nice start to a new year.

    Regarding your question, it all depends.. is it a commute (one-way) of 1 hour or 2 hours? If it is anything less than or equal to 1 hour I wouldn't think much about it. 2 hours is probably a no-no unless the job is oh-so-interesting-that-I-will-never-get-this-chance-again! :)

  14. Oh, yum, one of my favorite dishes any time of day or night! :) Looks divine, ISG!!

    Commuting -- my old job was 45 min to an hour each way in the car (due more to traffic than distance). It was a nightmare. Now I am ten minutes away. Alas the car is still the only means. Like Nupur, I'd love to work from home -- on the other hand, I might commute further for my own business! ;)

  15. yes, definitely closer to home, if there's a choice! I did 1.15 hrs in the morning and 1.30-2.15 hrs everyday for 4 months. Left me dead tired in the evening. Couldn't help being in a crappy mood most days! One good reason why we moved relatively closer to work.

    Sabudana khichdi looks yumm! I'm missing that from my Pune days.

  16. reminds me of home,..;-)

  17. I love sabudana khichdi - and yes, I don't understand how it can be called fasting food when it fills you up so well ;)

    Have you tried Nupur's microwave version (one hot stove)? I tried it once and haven't looked back. I soak the sabudana overnight and even then it comes out all fluffy and separate in the morning. after just spending exactly 5 minutes on it.And half the oil you need to make sabudana half way decent on the stove top.

    My first job had me travel 40 km each way everyday -so I left at 7 am every morning by the office bus and came home at 6 30pm. It was my first job when there were no other opportunities and we didnt have kids-so it was fine. I wouldnt do it again. No way.

    On the other hand, when I shifted to Delhi and was looking for a job, I more or less knew that I would end up working in Gurgaon (after ruling out Noida and Faridabad completely) since all the jobs were there. So, we chose a house in South Delhi - about 20km away from Gurgaon.
    We could have chosen to live in Gurgaon and ruled out the commute completely - but our quality of life would have been very poor - there is hardly anything to do in Gurgaon and definitely none for kids.
    My commute for two years took me between 45 minutes to one hour - but I was fine with that since the job was very good, work environment is great and I dont have to work late. I was home by 6 everyday and got to spend time with my daughter. I now take the Metro and it has shortened my commute time even more.
    So, to answer your question - yes, commute time would be an important factor for me when I choose a job.

  18. My dad makes awesome javvarisi upma... For me however, it was a gooey mess many of the times but have you tried Nupur's MW method? I got good results everytime.
    ANother thing is also the kind of javvarisi... some are too starchy.

    Commute would be a big criteria for sure.. I think atleast one parent should be closer to home or it's really tough on the kids (and us).

  19. Cilantro, you are absolutely right. The one which became mush was an Amish store brought one hence not suitable for soaking maybe but they are fine in payasam though.

    Divya, you are very welcome. Glad you liked it.

    Sharmila, yes live and learn :)

    Sanjeeta kk - Oh yes! never to forget the peanuts.

    HC & Suma, yes same for me too and it took me this long to try out a savory version with them.

    Linda and Kay - time to make some.

    Miri and Laavanya - checked out Nupur's recipe. Wonder why it did not show up in the google searches. Brain should have worked it is a Maharastrian speciality too isn't? I appended Gujarati to the recipe search :(

  20. I am happy to see that you did the sabudana khichri with so little oil. I do not make it but love it. when MIL was here, she had used I think the same proportion of ghee as the sabudana and I could not eat it at all, it felt so greasy and heavy. I have to try to make it myself.

  21. For me javvarisi is tricky even in payasam. But, I am going to try this for sure since you have state what exactly you did to the javvarisi before it got the upma status. Love the simple recipe.


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