Upma from idli(Idli usli)

When we were kids, my mom always prepared idlis in a large quantity. On the first day, she would serve it with sambar and chutney. Usually in Konkani homes, either sambar or chutney was served with idlis, but at our home, my brother used to prefer chutney and I preferred sambar. We used to throw a tantrum, if my mom obliged to one of us. She had to listen “you love him/her more than me, so you always listen what he/she wants” :). So she would prepare both to keep both of us satisfied. It became so much of a habit that, we both learnt eating idli with sambar and chutney. Now it has become a habit of eating both, we complain if one of them is not served with idli :D.

For the evening snack, she would shallow-fry the remaining idlis(I will post her recipe of shallow fry soon). If still some of the idlis remained, she would store them in refrigerator and prepare upma on the next day (the refrigerated idlis become a bit hard, so they dont taste as good as the fresh ones). Though as a kid I didn’t like this upma much, I absolutely love it now. Its the best dish, one could think of, out of hard idlis. I make this dish even on the first day itself, when I screw up the idli batter and get very hard idlis :).

The picture is taken by my brother and sis-in-law. They took it when they prepared this dish in Bangalore.

Idlis 7-8
Mustard seeds 1/2 tea spn
Green chilies 2-3
Curry leaves 4-5
Asafoetida a pinch
Turmeric a pinch
Coconut(optional) 1 tbl spn
Coriander leaves(optional) 2-3 strands
Oil 1 tea spn

Powder the idlis with hand. There should not be big lumps.
Heat oil and add mustard seeds. When they start popping up, add curry leaves, asafoetida, green chillies. Fry a bit. Add turmeric and powdered idlis. Mix well. If required, add salt (Idlis will have salt, so be careful while adding extra salt). Garnish with coconut and chopped coriander leaves.

Serves : 2
Preparation time : 7-8mins

21 thoughts on “Upma from idli(Idli usli)”

  1. hey, we call this idli usli at home. I make this instead of serving idli’s cos they invariably turn out hard on day 1 itself!! Guess we have a lot in common.

  2. Shilpa, same here, i love idli upma very much..Mom used to make more of the idli’s and store them and used to make idli upma for me the next day..We add onions in addition…This brought back my childhood…Thanks for sharing..

  3. Hi Shilpa …Thanks for posting this wonderful, idli upma. My hubby loves it very much compared to fresh idlis. He prefers this to idli chutney/sambhar. Unfortunately here i make the batter enough for one serving, so no idlis are left over. My mom does not use turmeric and uses one onion and coconut oil. Tastes gr8.

  4. Shilpa ….Since this is called idlle usli – why dont you also add to your title. BTW.. the onions which are added are raw, along with the crushed idlis. Forgot to mention in the previous comment.

  5. Thanks Preeti, Sudha for the comment.
    Aruna, I have updated the title of the post. BTW…turmeric is supposed to be very good for health. So my aayi/pachi have made it a habit of adding a pinch of it wherever possible. It does not affect the taste, but if it is someway helpful for a good health ( I read somewhere, turmeric reduces chances of cancer), definitely it is better to use. I will try with onion next time. There is one more dish usually called as ‘idli puddi’ where, we put onion sometime and do not put seasoning.

  6. Hi Shilpa …..Ya recollected, when you wrote “idli puddi”. Here the seasoning is not there. It is in this where my mom adds onions. I did not know it is called idli puddi, coz we had one standard name usli. Yes in the seasoning one she would not onions, and the other one had a spoon of urad dal also in the seasoning. Thanks for pointing the difference in the two, usli’s

  7. Shilpa,
    I never knew until I got married and came into a Konkani family that such a dish existed. However, the first time I ate it, I got hooked on to it. I always look forward to making and then having the Usli when I make idlis. Also, it comes in handy for a working woman. If Idlis for breakfast on Sunday, then no separate preparation as such on Monday! 🙂

  8. Hi Shilpa,
    Thanks for all your nutritious recipes posted here on this site and also a big thanks for all those sharing their recipes for free…..Good to know that there are still people who care and share in this world…..some sites are by well-known chefs…but they are paid sites where only paid members can get in…..

    I am learning to cook ..recently married…so these recipes come in a lot handy for me to use

    Love your recipes!!!!!!! :-))

  9. hey shilpa,

    thanks a lot, and Liz,, there are many sites where you get free recipes, you have to search in google with proper key words, for eg., today i was wondering what to make with the excess idlys i have made, i searched for idly upma in google, and ended up here.. so like wise you can search for all kinds of recipes, and will end up getting many results.. happy cooking..


  10. Hi Shilpa,
    Thanks for ur tips to make soft chappatis. they really work well.i shared this with few of my friends..since i am teaching not getting much time to mail…but i make sure to check this site when i have to refer anything……Thanks bindubaba for ur suggestions…..i hope u understand…its the time factor that im not able to search much…..

    Shilpa as u said will try the cake and let u know….

    thanks 1ce again 🙂

  11. hi Shilpa,
    to get softter idlis……do add few fenugreek seeds(methi seeds) in the rice when u soak them in water for few hours. when ur about to grind the batter at that time , take cooked rice(or leftover) a closed fist of amount is enough and grind them along with idlis…u will get softer idlis…..i tried these… tips from friends…..they worked for me….

    rice is the white rice which we normally use for idlis or dosas…….

    do let me know if they worked…..

  12. Hey Shilpa try this out…………………………….heat some oil, add musturd………….let it splutter…….add a pinch of turmeric, asafoetida and chilli powder (according to taste) and the add idli (crushed but not powedered) . Mix it well on high flame. Let the idlis get hot enough and crispy. Serve hot. Sour idlis especially become yummy…………

  13. The first time I mentioned idli upma to my hubby, he was sceptical.., but then he loved it. I also add urad dal in the tempering…Wow, fired idlis, those were my favourite too !!!

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