This is something made in our household when there is leftover bread, mind you not mouldy!
This is very similar to the south Indian version of bread upma but with very mild twists ie it does have a good sprinkling of Garam masala which is not commonly used in the south Indian cuisine. Those of you who are not familiar with the term ‘Upma’, it’s a breakfast staple from the southern part of India, especially from the state of Tamilnadu.
In India the breakfast is normally savoury food with exceptions far few and rare. Therefore my comfort breakfast is still something savoury and therefore cereals don’t really appeal much to me personally.
This can also be made for a quick weekday dinner / tea or as a brunch on weekends or even served with a classic cup of ‘masala Chai’.
Jumping in straight into the recipe.
- Bread slices – I used 8 slices of large sandwich white slices ( you could very well use brown bread )
- Plain natural yoghurt – 1 tbsp ( optional ) ( I used greek style ) OR a little sprinkling of drinking water
- *Ground coriander powder – ½ tsp
- *Red chilli powder – as per your choice ( I used ½ tsp )
OR *Sambhar powder could be used in place of ground powder and red chilli powder – 2 tsp
- Cooking oil – 1 tbsp
- Brown mustard seeds – 1/4th tsp
- Chana dal or Bengal gram dal – ½ tsp ( optional, but recommended as adds crunch)
- Urad dal or split white dal – ½ tsp
- Hing / asafoetida – a pinch
- Curry leaves- a few ( optional )( I didn’t have them so skipped )
- Green chillies – deseeded and slit ( as per your preference of heat )
- Fresh Ginger – ½ tsp finely chopped
- Fresh garlic – 2 cloves, skinned and finely chopped
- Cooking onion – 1 small, skinned and finely chopped
- Tomato – 1 medium sized, finely chopped
- Tomato ketchup – 1 tbsp
- Salt to taste
- Coriander greens – a few sprigs freshly chopped ( optional but definitely enhances flavour )
- Garam masala powder – 1/4th tsp
- Grated or desiccated coconut – ½ tbsp ( optional )
How do you make it –
- Cut off the crusts of the bread and either cut them or tear them into inch square pieces. Put these pieces in a mixing bowl and add yoghurt, salt, ground coriander powder and chilli powder or sambhar powder, which ever you are using. Toss everything well ensuring that all the bread pieces are well coated in the masala mixture. If using water instead of Yoghurt, sprinkle water just to get the bread pieces wet. The bread pieces should not be soaking well, just very mildly wet, for softening the bread and to help the spice powders coat the pieces ever so slightly.
- In a heated heavy bottomed frying pan with oil, add the brown mustard and let it splutter. Make sure the pan is closed with a lid when this is happening. Then add the hing or asafoetida, Chana dal, Urad dal and curry leaves giving it just enough time for the dals to change to a golden yellow. To this add the ginger, garlic, green chillies and onions and fry till the onions are well done.
- Toss in the tomato pieces and cook with the lid on until the tomatoes turn mushy. Once this is done, add the tomato ketchup and give it about 10 – 15 seconds on heat and add the bread pieces which are sat marinating. Toss all of them well making sure the masala is well coated on the bread pieces. Sprinkle the Garam masala, desiccated coconut and garnish with coriander herbs before serving.
Make sure to check for seasoning before serving.
If your tastebuds like it tangy, a dash of lemon juice would be something you can add, feel free to personalise.