Tag Archives: tapioca

Pumpkin Payasam

A few weeks ago, I bought a small pumpkin to make creme brulee’. But I kept putting it off since I had to use cream. I thought maybe I would make Pumpkin Tapioca instead. From that sprung the idea of payasam. Here’s how I made it.



4 cups milk (I used 2%)
1/2 cup sugar
1/8 cup tapioca
1/4 cup vermicelli
1/2 tsp cardamon, ground
1 tsp butter
2-3 tbsp cashews
2-3 tbsp golden raisins

Dry roast the vermicelli for 4-5 minutes till lightly golden.

In a large pot, bring the milk to boil. Add sugar, tapioca and and roasted vermicelli and continue to cook.

Meanwhile peel and chop pumpkin. Add some water to a pan and cook the pumpkin till it softens. Mash to paste with spatula or put it through a blender. Add to the milk and mix well. Continue cooking for a few minutes and remove from flame.

In a separate pan, add a tsp of butter and fry cashews and raisins and add to the payasam. Serve warm as dessert after lunch or dinner.


Pearl Tapioca Upma

Upma is an all time favorite breakfast item and I doubt if I will ever tire of it. Growing up,  almost every weekend we had upma or tomato bath (as we called it so my brother would eat it ). Most commonly it is made with cream of wheat but you can also use vermicelli, bulghur wheat or more recently I have made it with Amaranth grains, pearl couscous and quinoa. In India, upma is also sometimes made with tapioca or sago.

Recently while visiting some friends in Boston, I had tapoica upma. It has been so long since I had it and it felt refreshing and delicious. And of course, this past weekend, I decided to make some at home for breakfast. Here’s how I made mine. Try it!



1 cup tapoica
1 medium onion chopped
1 medium potato chopped
1 jalapeno chopped
a few curry leaves
1 tsp chana dal
1 tsp urad dal
1 tsp mustard seeds
salt to taste
1-2 tbsp peanuts
1-2 tbsp oil
a few curry leaves

Soak the pearl tapioca in water for 2-3 hrs.


Lightly roast the peanuts and grind them in a blender. Set aside.

Add oil to a pan and add channa dal, urad dal and mustard seeds and fry till the seeds start to sputter. Add chopped onion, curry leaves and jalapeno and fry for a minute. Add chopped potato and continue to fry them till they turn slightly golden.

Meanwhile, rinse and drain the water from the tapioca. Squeeze out the additional moisture loosely and add the tapioca to the pan. Mix well. Add salt and ground peanut powder. Mix well. Keep on for another 5 minutes. Serve warm.

Can drizzle some lemon juice if desired.


See Also:
Quino Upma
Pearl Couscous Upma
Amaranth Upma
Upma & Pessarattu