While writing a recipe, I usually google up the main ingredient to know about its health benefits so I can include it in my post. When I was writing this recipe, I found out that sooji (semolina) is a rich source of protein and that the plant pigments (beta-carotene) found in sooji help boost our immune system. I tried to include sooji in Devansh's diet when he was around 9 months old. At that time I did not know the exact benefits of sooji. All I knew was that sooji has been part of our diet for generations and that it is good for health. And so I was keen that Devansh eats it. However, getting Devansh to like sooji was a challenge. I tried to get him to eat sooji ka halwa when he was around 9-10 months of age and he didn’t like it. So I gave him upma, which I made without using chili powder. He didn’t like the bland upma. After 3-4 attemps of feeding him sooji halwa and upma I gave up. After he was one and a half, I decided to give it one more shot. This time I used chili powder to make the upma spicy and instead of just adding mashed vegetables in the upma I sauted them in (powdered) jeera tadka. And voila…Devansh started eating upma. Hope your li'l one enjoys this upma. :-)
- 4 tbsp sooji (semolina)
- Pinch of hing (asafoetida)
- Pinch of haldi (turmeric powder)
- 1/5th tsp red chili powder (optional)
- Half tsp jeera powder
- 3-4 tbsp mashed vegetables (cooked as per the recipe given earlier in this blog)
- 2 tbsp homemade ghee (clarified butter)
- Salt to taste
- Heat a pan and add sooji.
- Roast the sooji on low flame for about 5 minutes while stirring continuously.
- When the sooji has just started to turn light brown, add 1 tbsp ghee.
- Roast the sooji on ghee for a couple of minutes while stirring continuously.
- Add 2 cups of water.
- Add red chili powder and salt, and stir properly. (You can use less or no red chili powder if your baby’s smaller or is not used to spicy food.)
- Bring the sooji to a boil, then lower the flame and allow it to simmer till it reaches the desired consistency. For smaller babies, you will need to make the upma slightly runny.
- Heat another pan.
- Add ghee and immediately add jeera powder.
- Stir the jeera powder for a minute, and then add haldi and hing.
- Add mashed vegetables and stir for a minute. If you don’t have mashed vegetables ready with you and want to use fresh vegetables, boil them properly and then mash them finely or coarsely depending on your baby’s age.
- Add the mashed vegetables to the cooked sooji and mix properly.
- Add some homemade ghee to the upma before serving it.