Chow Chow Bhath | Regional Indian Cuisines

Chow Chow bhath is a famous breakfast dish in the Indian state of Karnataka. The name may be misleading for those who know the word ‘chow chow’ as a vegetable. This vegetable is called by many names chow chow, chayote, seema kathirikai, seeme badhnekayi etc.,. But it sure is not a dish about that vegetable. Honestly I do not know the history behind how this dish got its name. But I knew about this dish when I was working in Bangalore. I was staying in a hostel with my friends. It was one lazy Sunday morning, when we were listening to the radio while doing some laundry and there was this program called Chow Chow Bhath. That was an interesting name for a radio program, so we asked one of our Bangalorean friends what it meant and she told us about this dish, a combo of both sweet and spicy components and that is what that program is all about.
So this Chow Chow bhath consists of Kesri Bhath and Khara Bhath aka Upma served together for breakfast.


Kesri Bhath – Check out the recipe here.

Kaara Bhath/Upma
Rava / Sooji – 1 cup
Onion – sliced thin and halved – 1 cup
Tomato – 1/2 – chopped
Chopped vegetables – approx 1-1/2 cups (I used a combination of carrots, beans and peas cut into approx same size for fast cooking)
Chilli powder – 1/2 tsp 
Curry leaves – a few
Coriander leaves – a little
Turmeric powder – 1/4 tsp
Hot Water – 3 cups
Oil – 1 tbsp
Salt – to taste
Mustard seeds – 1/2 tsp
Urad dhal – 1/2 tsp
Chana dhal – 1/2 tsp


Dry roast the rava until it is hot to touch. Remove to a plate to cool. Place the vegetables in a microwave proof bowl mixed with a tsp of water and microwave for 2-3 minutes until done. Alternatively the vegetables could be steamed. Heat oil in the same kadai and add the ingredients for tempering and curry leaves. When the mustard seeds splutter, add the chopped onions with a pinch of salt and fry until it turns soft. Add the chopped tomato and fry a little. Add the cooked vegetables with turmeric powder and chilli powder. Add the hot water and salt. Check for seasoning. When the water starts to boil add the rava and mix in medium-low heat until all the water is absorbed and the rava is cooked.
Serve the Kesri bhath and Kaara bhath together with Sambar and Chutney.

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