Sajjige Bajil

Sajjige or Tomato Bhaat is basically upma and Bajil is a savory preparation of thin poha. This is a regular breakfast for many people in coastal areas of Udupi and Mangalore. The soft upma or tomato bhaat with semi-crisp poha is a classic combination with a steaming cup of filter coffee. It is usually served at brahmin weddings at breakfast. Most of the time weddings are held earlier in the day as opposed to Northern part of India where weddings are held in the evenings. The muhurat or the auspicious time is anywhere from 7am-12 pm. So guests are treated to breakfast along with the wedding feast. This is one of the dishes served at the time.

I make this for brunch as Hubby loves this combination and asks me to frequently make the dish. Thin poha is the variety used here so it doesn’t  need to be cooked but seasoned well.Tomato bhaat is slightly different from upma as tomato is used for flavoring and that’s what lends the reddish color. 

The ingredient list might seem long for some but it is mostly repeated for both preparations. Try making this dish and you will not be disappointed. Let’s start now.



Prep Time

15- 20 minutes

Cook Time

15 minutes

Total Time

30-35 minutes


For Sajjige or Tomato Bhaat:

  • 1 cup plus 2 tbsp sooji
  • 1 tsp chana dal
  • 2 tsp urad dal
  • 1 tsp mustard seeds
  • 12 tsp cumin seeds
  • ¼  tsp turmeric powder
  • 8-10 cashewnuts
  • 2 tomatoes, chopped
  • 1 sprig curry leaves
  •  2 whole red chilies
  • ½ tsp sugar, optional
  • 2 green chilies, chopped
  • 2-3 tsp coconut, grated
  • 3 cups warm water
  • Salt to taste
  • 2 -3 tbsp ghee

For Bajil or Poha:

  • 1 cup thin poha
  • 2 tsp urad dal
  • 1 tsp mustard seeds
  • ½ tsp cumin seeds
  • 1 whole red chili
  • 1 green chili, chopped
  • 2 tbsp cilantro, chopped
  • 1 sprig curry leaves
  • 1 tsp red chili powder
  • ½  tsp turmeric powder
  • 1 tsp sugar
  • ¼  tsp asafetida powder
  • Salt to taste
  • 2 -3tbsp oil, I use avocado


For Sajjige or Tomato Bhaat:

Step 1
Dry roast sooji for 8-10 minutes in a pan. Transfer to a bowl and keep aside.

Step 2
In the same pan add ghee saute urad dal, chana dal, mustard, cumin, turmeric, red chilies and cashew nuts. Saute until mustard splutters.

Step 3
Add chopped tomatoes, curry leaves and green chiles. Add salt and fry till tomatoes are mushy.

Step 4
Now add roasted sooji and warm water and mix well. Add sugar and coconut. Mix well until sooji absorbs all the water.

For Poha or Bajil:

Step 1
Take a bowl and add poha.

Step 2
In a small pan and add oil. When the oil is heated well add urad dal, mustard, asafetida, turmeric, cumin and red chili. When mustard splutters add cilantro, coconut, red chili powder and sugar.

Step 3
Add the seasoning ingredients to the poha and mix well using a slotted spoon or hands so that the poha is slightly crushed. You can add a spoon or two of water or oil to moisten it. 

Step 4
When the poha is completely coated with the seasoning it is ready to be served with tomato bhaat.


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The famous proverb "you are what you eat” as quoted by the French author Anthelme Brillat-Savarin is very true. Food nourishes you from the inside out. Good health is of utmost importance to me. Vegetarianism and Veganism are gaining immense popularity these days. Natural, organic, healthy and homemade is my mantra.

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