Thursday, 17 November 2011

Roti ka Poha / Snack made from leftover rotis

 I have always wondered what is it with people when comes to waiting in queues. 
Especially long ones. 
Everybody is restless, fidgety.
Keep bending to their side and try to look ahead.
 Look here and there.
As if the rest of the world has stopped moving just because that one person has to stand and wait.

And the one behind you, given the chance, will climb on your shoulder and crawl down to stand in front of you.
You can hear his/her mumblings of impatience.
And get poked with whatever things s/he is holding.
As if it is your fault the line is not moving ahead.
If it is a counter for tickets or bill payment, the person managing it is declared as the most inefficient worker. 

If it is a traffic line, it is even bad.
If it is a narrow two way lane, it is worse.
People will honk horns as if they had just discovered their vehicle had one.
And will surely overtake those already waiting in line, giving them a look that says "what duffers!"
In the process blocking the whole road.
Nobody can come from the front and nobody from this side can move.
Deed done, despite getting stuck themselves,
will still look smugly around. 

It is worse at the airports.
I recently made a trip home and was waiting to board.
People had gathered and filled up every possible seat at the waiting area with themselves, their kids, their hand luggage ...
which interestingly varied from a book
to several small bundles of things
to two plastic mugs and a kadahi,
their kids' luggage ... if a small rucksack and a water bottle can be called that.
Well ... they have the tickets ... so they'll use the seats.

And wait.
That waiting keeps building their restlessness.
Nothing helps ... not talking on phones, reading papers,
getting up importantly to get a coffee and then deciding against it
and turning around to grab back their chair again ...
nothing helps.

When finally the boarding gate is readied to let you through,
you see the rush!
Everybody scrambles to get up, collect their belongings, grab the kids, jump over people
 and run to stand in the line.
I just sit back and watch ... fascinated.
The line forms.
A very long line.
With the last person standing far, far away from the actual gate.
And they keep jostling
so that the they can move a wee little more ahead.
I still sit and watch.
And get looks of pity.
They talk to themselves or wonder ... poor girl, travelling alone.
Doesn't know boarding has started.

The line moves painfully slow.
The people finally get to board the bus in batches.
Those who get to have a look of triumph on their faces.
Those who cannot and have to wait for the next bus to move forward, have a look of defeat.
And they keep glancing at me.
The line has grown shorter ... what is she doing?
She'll miss the flight!

When there are exactly three people left to move through, I get up.
Board the last bus with the final group.
Just when I enter the plane, I glance around.
And see the disapproving looks and frowns.
After all, they'd been in the queue first!
And had to wait!
And hear a stage whisper ... "Itna late karenge toh desh kya hoga?"

This is a wonderful way of using up leftover rotis from last night's dinner.
I wanted to  call this the upma but decided against it as upma has water added to it
while this is a very
dryish dish.
You can add some water to this if you want it very soft ...
but that too will be just a sprinkle.
I love this dry.
So dry that some pieces of the crushed roti will be crispy.
But it still won't be too dry as the onions and tomatoes add some softness to it.
And if you are like me ... have to have some egg  for breakfast,
you can just scramble up some and mix it in.


 Left over rotis
Onions - chopped
Tomatoes - chopped
Green chillies - chopped
Curry leaves
Mustard seeds - for tempering
Cooking oil
Salt - to taste
Sugar - to taste 
Tumeric powder - a pinch

How to 
Lightly crumble the rotis, rubbing them between your palms.
The pieces should be coarse and not too fine.

Heat some cooking oil.
Add the mustard seeds and wait for them to start spluttering.
Add the onions and the chilles and stir fry for a while.
Add the curry leaves.
Add the tomatoes and fry well till cooked.
Next add the roti and mix well.
Add the tumeric powder, salt and sugar.
Stir fry for a while and mix well.
If you want it soft and not crispy, sprinkle some water and cover it for a while. 

Serve hot with a steaming cup of tea.
Enjoy !!


  1. is this similar to the maharashtrian snack of farnichi roti...the photo is very appatising

  2. wow healthy breakfast,love it at anytime...

  3. oh!once I was travelling alone from Kolkata to Bangalore with my then only 1 yr old baby. he was having little fever and leaving home and parents always take an emotional toll.I was feeling helpless with a sick baby, my luggage, the ticket and the tension first time travelling alone with the baby. when the official procedures were done i went to the waiting area and just as you described it was jam packed with everything... passengers and their luggage. i finally approached an elderly couple to please remove their hand luggage from the chair so that I could seat. but they down rightly said No. trust me I was stunned that anybody could do so. atleast to a lady with a baby. but thats what we have become...restless and unsympathetic.
    I tried making this dish once but it was very dry. am planning to try once again with more tomatoes.

  4. Kalyan ... thanks. Right, the same.

    Premalatha ... thanks.

    Sayantani ... nothing surprising. I've always come across rude and selfish travellers ... especially in flights more than in trains.
    Try adding a little sprinkle of water to the crumbled roti the next time ... will help.

  5. I too make like this sometimes. Nice way to finsh the leftover :)

  6. Looks so very good. I make this for lunch for the kids. I add eggs to the mix as well.

    Sayantani's story in the comment above makes me wonder affluence = losing one's humanity

  7. The way it is written, it reads like a poem.

    Queues here are very decent, no pokes, no push, no shove, everyone maintains a decent distance from another and worse is there no jhaalmuri or some such wala popping up to appease the people in the queue.

    I sometimes seriously doubt the patience of the people standing in line here. Granted I am the one who keeps my country's flag flying by being the most impatient one !!!

    Ami Roti poha kokhono khai ni, blog ei prothom dekhechi. Tomar ta khub cheerful hoyeche

  8. Hmm.. Queue eyikhane hoye but very decently they manage everything and honking is no no here..nobody honks unless you decide to jump in front of moving car/traffic..i really felt somewhere train journeys in India are much better than taking a flight to cover distance..even people are very friendly and adjusting..roti ka poha amra dim diye ba chicken e piece diye banae..tobe ekto tel beshi korcha hoye :-D...hugs and smiles

  9. love the pics...the queues here are better, but the restlessness is shown by shuffling feet and low grumbles. Will try this soon.

  10. simple to make, yet appetizing.

  11. :D ... Beautifully written and on such a mundane thing. I was once told in an airport line in India to go to the "Ladies Line" by a man. I had asked him very politely if he was waiting to go to the bathroom? If he was, then it is the wrong line he was waiting in. He shushed...

    well my kids were "BORED" in capitals with all the jostling around this time.. like u, I wait until the end unless I am called for the "kids priority". It is not so bad here, and people do not push trying to get ahead of you, unless it is some Indian (hate to say it loud, but it is true).. I have see an Indian parent once send their little kid to cut thru' a line in a grocery store while they waited in another line. Unfortunately I was there, and I send him right back to his parents. But these things are not seen so often here.

    I never had roti ka poha! what a great way to use up old ones and i have plenty of them.

  12. I just realised I never replied to you all.

    Thanks to all of you for liking my poha and also for your interesting inputs. Loved all your stories. :-)

  13. First time here.U have a wonderful space and mouth watering recipes and clicks.
    Happy to follow you :)

  14. haha good story! desh ka kya hoga - indeed! I hate such attitude! goos you are the smart one...
    yummy breakfast idea too...

  15. thinking about you was your banale ..wish you a very happy new year in advance..hugs and smiles

  16. how are you ? just came by to wish you a Happy New Year!

  17. Mayeka ... thanks.

    Somoo, Jaya ... thanks girls. Am touched.
    Am doing ok.
    Wish you a beautiful and very happy new year too! Hugs. :-)

  18. it's so simple and looks like yummy
    thanks for recipe


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