Friday, September 16, 2011

Recipe - Methi (Fenugreek leaves) Sabzi

Yesterday on the way back when I stopped to buy vegetables, I saw beautiful methi (fenugreek leaves) at the shop. As a kid, I didn't like methi. But I remember seeing fresh methi at a small grocery store in Ipswich many years ago and since it reminded me of India, I ended up buying it and making sabzi. Now, it's one of my favourite veggies. So I ended up buying it and here's the recipe of how I make it. Will upload few other ways of making it some other time.

Ingredients: (Serves 2-3)
  1. Methi leaves - 250 gms
  2. Onion - 1 medium
  3. Potato - 1 big
  4. Dry red chillies - 3
  5. Garlic - 7-8 cloves
  6. Cumin seeds - 1 tsp
  7. Red chilli powder - 1/2 tsp
  8. Turmeric powder - 3/4 tsp
  9. Salt to taste
  10. Sugar to taste
  11. Oil (peanut/sunflower) - 4 tsp
Method:
1. Generally methi leaves are available in a stack of full stalks. The leaves need to be plucked at their base and the stalk can be thrown away or used to make veg stock. The picture below might help in understanding what needs to be plucked. Wash them properly before using them. I hate this plucking part.
2. Peel the potato and cut it into small pieces. Don't make the pieces too thin. About 3 or 4 mm thickness is good, otherwise the potatoes will overcook as methi takes more time to cook. Cut the onion in long pieces as shown. Finely chop the garlic and break the dry red chillies into large pieces.
3. Take 4 tsp of oil in a wok and heat it. Put the cumin seeds. and quickly put the dry red chillies and garlic in. Cover the wok for 10 seconds.
4. Put the onion in and mix it well. Cover and let it cook till the onion is slightly brown. Don't keep the flame too high or the onion will start sticking to the wok.
5. Put the red chilli powder and turmeric powder and mix it. Cook for 30 seconds.
6. Put the potatoes in and mix them well.
7. Now put the washed methi leaves in the wok and try to mix it. The leaves are gonna shrink in size as they heat up when you mix them. So put them in the wok in batches instead of trying to put all of them at the same time. In the pic below, I have put less than half of the 250 gms I had. When cooked, the 250 gms would become even smaller in size than this.
8. When all the leaves are mixed in, put salt and a little water. The water is needed to stop everything from sticking to the wok. Remember, methi leaves have a lot of water in them so don't put too much water. We are not making a curry. Also, you can keep adding water later till the leaves are fully cooked. Cover the pan and let it cook.
9. One medium-low flame, methi can take about 15-20 min to cook. Keep checking every few minutes to make sure there's enough water in it to cook methi. The best way to know if it has cooked is to eating some of it. When it is soft enough for your taste, it's cooked. Just before it's fully cooked, put a pinch of sugar and mix.
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TIP:: Methi (Fenugreek) leaves can be quite bitter sometimes. One way to reduce the bitterness is to soak the plucked leaves in water mixed with some salt and sugar for 15 minutes.