Poha with cumins (Jeere kalayile phovu)

I had promised long ago that I would post these simple poha dishes that are very popular in Konkani homes. These are basically 10 minute dishes and no cooking involved. Just mix(kalayi in Konkani) all the ingredients with fresh coconut and thin poha and the job is done. These pohas were very popular in any Konkani wedding/function breakfasts, but in the recent times over the last decade or so people have started preparing more fashionable/modern breakfasts.

I think the kalayile(mixed with hand) phovu was chosen because this is fast to prepare and are very filling. These are staple foods for those who do a lot of manual work.

This particular type of kalayile(mixed with hand) phovu is known after my maternal uncle (maam) at my home. He is called Balu at home, so we all call this after him – Balu phovu. That’s because he is very fond of this and he would ask my aayi to prepare this whenever he came to visit us. He loves this more than any other snacks and he can have it at any time of the day :).

Check out kalayile phovu with special poha masala powder. There are ofcourse other types of poha, and soon I will be posting them in this series of Poha preparations.

1 cup thin poha
1/2 tea spn mustard seeds
1/2 tea spn cumin seeds
1/2 tea spn ghee
1 tea spn chili powder
1/2 tea spn turmeric powder
1/2 cup fresh/frozen coconut
2 tea spn jaggery

Heat ghee and add mustard seeds. When they start popping, add cumin seeds. Switch off heat and add chili powder. Pour this over coconut, jaggery, salt and mix well with hand. Now add poha and mix till everything is well mixed. If you feel it is very dry, add a tea spn water and mix. Water softens the poha.
Serve with sev.

Serves : 2-3
Preparation time : 10mins

28 Comments for “Poha with cumins (Jeere kalayile phovu)”

Mridula Pai


Hey Shilpa…this is a good one and quick too :) My mom always does this with khali uppit(without onions) during festivals when you are not supposed to eat onions. It tastes absolutely awesome and is indeed very filling. Thanks and keep the good work going:)

Happy New Year :)



That sounds so homely and simple…and its cute the way we name dishes after our family members :) Have a great new year SHilpa, your cake effort was tremendous!


Simply one of my favorites. My mom made this nearly every morning for breakfast on this visit.
And it is important to have that little “shev” to give it a crunch!

M does not really like it – so i guess I will have to wait for this pohvu till I get back home, or to Kansas!

Shilpa: Haha…I can make that for u and my hubby. For me and M, we will make something more suitable for our taste buds ;). As far as my home is concerned, this is every guy’s favorite, including dad and bro.

Deepa Mohankumar


Hi shilpa
Happy new year. This looks great. Where do u live in Kansas ? I live in Overland park, KS.
Take care.

Shilpa: Deepa, Thanks. I am sending you a mail.

Mama's girl


I love poha chutneys and there are so many ways to make them with jeera, sambar powder, green chillies etc. Funnily pohu lovers seemed to be married to pohu haters going by the comments! My husband is not keen on it so I just make the upkari instead of the simple methods of uncooked poha.



Hey Shilpa,

Happy new year first!!!

Is this the same as Garam masalya phovu?? And as Arun says above adding Shev made it sorta complete…
My mom used 2 send it in my tiffin for breakfast, but I hated it then and my gujarati friends used to devour it.
Anyways I am leaving for India next week and hope to relive some of “aayis recipes” konkani stuff live, hahaha.



That was tasty.All of us liked it.
You must be knowing about ‘pachchodi pohu’
needs less effort,tastes good.



Hi. i just tried this recipe n i liked it. It reminds me of our Mangalorians(konkan) food. Kalaiyle poha laik jatha.
I’ll b trying other recipies of urs.
Thanks for sharing them all of us.

Geeta Sawant


Hi Shipa
I just made it as an evening snack and it is awesome. We used to make soaked poha+ coconut+ jag + salt on first day of diwali and as a kid I hated it because I didnot like sweet . This has a hinch of chilli and jeera so it is perfect for my taste bud.




I always used to think that adding more ingredients wud make a dish tastier.. But this dish of urs proved it wrong.. Less is more :) Simply loved it..
All ur recipes have been so succesful that I simply read the ingredients(to check if i have everything) and start preparing it step by step.. even before completely reading the recipe.. :)

God Bless,



This recipe is good the family liked it. For a change I added a few curry leaves and 1/2 small minced onion. Thanks.

Narayan Mahale


Its a awesome recipe and wonderful taste. I am sure entire konkani samaj (especially more from Kumta region) enjoy kalailo pohu with uppitu and sev to mix with,. My mother who is no more now used to prepare it very often and surely at the times when guests used to come home without informing or informing at a short notice. It was so easy for our earlier generations that they used to prepare kalailo pohu while busy talking with guests. Its a rare case now a days.
Thanks that this recipe took me 30/40 years back. Good Work… Keep it up.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *