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Wednesday, March 28, 2007

javvarisi upma

easy recipe tapioca pearls vegetable upma sabu dana javvarisi
Javvarisi (aka sabu dana, sago) is tapioca pearls made from cassava/yuca roots. It was not my favorite when I was little: as tapioca pearls are very starchy and turn translucent when cooked, my young mind likened it to snot :-)

But, I have started appreciating it more these days... especially since I am eager to introduce my wee one to new foods as she is growing up.

The most common way my mom used to cook these up is a dessert/sweet dish called paisam where the tapioca pearls are cooked in milk and sugar till translucent.

Here, in this recipe, I just make a simple vegetable kichdi-style upma-of-sorts out of javvarisi, flavored by ginger, onions, turmeric and salt. I find the smell of ginger and onion sautéing with a pinch of turmeric and salt very appetizing :-)


1 cup javvarisi/tapioca pearls
1 medium potato, peeled, cooked, crumbled
½ cup frozen peas
½ cup frozen corn kernels
½ medium onion, diced finely
1-2 chilies, diced finely
2 Tbsp freshly grated ginger
1 tsp turmeric powder
salt to taste
cilantro for garnish

tempering: 1 Tbsp oil, 1 tsp mustard seeds, 1 tsp split urad dal, 1 tsp cumin seeds, some curry leaves (optional)


soak the javvarisi in 6 cups of water overnight or longer; usually, i like to soak it tonight and cook it for dinner tomorrow night

drain the soaked javvarisi well and pat dry if needed, keep handy

tempering: heat oil in a pan, add the urad dal and when it turns golden brown, add the mustard seeds, and when they start to pop, add the cumin seeds and curry leaves; then add the onions, chilies, turmeric powder and ginger, with a pinch of salt and sauté till onions turn translucent

add the frozen peas, corn kernels, and the cooked-and-crumbled potatoes, sauté for a bit longer

add the soaked and drained javvarisi and cook till the tapioca pearls turn translucent (if soaked well, it only takes a few minutes for the tapioca pearls to turn translucent); also, they tend to clump up, so, try to stir it on and off to keep the pearls separate

off heat, garnish with cilantro and serve warm

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  • At 11:02 AM, Blogger Nupur said…

    Ooh, sabudana khichdi is one of my all-time favorite foods. I love your version, studded with veggies.

  • At 5:11 AM, Blogger Asha said…

    I make Sago vadas but never made this though.Looks delicious.I will give it a try:)

  • At 7:00 AM, Blogger trupti said…

    I used to hate this when I was a kid too..funny how things change. I like your version with corn and peas and onions in it. We Gujjus don't use anything except peanut powder, green chilies, sugar and lime...and the other usual ingredients, of course.

    thanks for this diferent version Sheela.


  • At 11:57 AM, Blogger Nandita said…

    Exactly my story, this is the only food i HATED as a child besides Kathrikai curry and now I could give an arm and a leg to eat sabudana khichdi, as the Mumbai people call it. Something to do with age I guess, same is the case with perungaayam or asafoetida. I hated it then and I love it now.

  • At 4:31 AM, Blogger jeyachitra said…

    hello sheela,
    this is the recipe i was searching for... thanks a lot

    viji @!@


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