Category: Methi

Garden Greens for Sag Paneer

Spinach, swiss chard, methi plus cilantro and dill are growing so much, they are getting big and out of control in my garden. So, I plucked all the excesses and with that garden greens bounty, prepared sag paneer for lunch today. The following recipe is a tad different from the classic recipe blogged here in 2005. Instead of cashew powder, I’ve added carrot pulp to thicken the sag gravy and to add some sweetness to the greens. With carrot and paneer, garden greens never tasted this shiny-sweet before. It’s a good recipe if you have greens’ surplus.

Garden Greens
Garden Greens

Sag Paneer with Garden Greens
(for 6 to 8 servings)

1 bunch each – spinach, swiss chard and methi – coarsely chopped
1/2 cup each – cilantro and dill leaves – coarsely chopped
8 Guntur green chillies
1 carrot – sliced to chunks
1 red onion and 1 ripe tomato – finely chopped
1 cup or to taste – paneer cubes
1 teaspoon – ginger-garlic paste
1 tablespoon – cumin-coriander powder
1/4 teaspoon – turmeric
Salt to taste

1. In a wide pan, heat a tablespoon of peanut oil. Add the greens and green chillies. Saute until the leaves collapse and chillies soften. Turn off the heat and let the greens cool. Once they reach room temperature, take the sauteed greens and chillies in a food processor. Add a pinch of salt and pulse to coarse puree. Remove the mix to a bowl. In the same food processor, add carrot pieces and make super fine puree, adding water when necessary.

2. Wipe the pan clean and add another tablespoon of peanut oil. When oil is hot, add a pinch each – cumin and mustard seeds. When they start to pop, add the onion and tomato pieces. Saute until they soften , then stir in the garden greens and carrot puree. Add ginger-garlic paste, cumin-coriander powder, turmeric and salt. Mix well. Add the paneer cubes. Cover the pan and on medium heat, let simmer for about 10 to 15 minutes.

Serve the sag paneer warm with rice or roti. Tastes good on its own as well.

Sag Paneer with Garden Greens
Garden Sag Paneer with Rotis ~ for Bhojanam

Avocado~Methi Paratha

When culinary comfort is needed, it has become a habit to go into the kitchen to make parathas. Parathas magically transform dull looking meal options into a centerpiece meal, perfect for weekday eating but also special enough for that potluck party. Simply combine wheat flour with a favorite ingredient, rollout and cook, you have created something rich and tasty. For today, it was luxurious avocado and ultra-soulful fresh methi, gently kneaded into durum wheat flour and made into soft and satisfying parathas.

Avocado

Avocado-Methi Parathas
(for 8 medium-sized parathas)

Ingredients:
2 cups whole-wheat flour
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 ripe avocado cut, seed removed and ripe flesh smoothly mashed
1 cup, finely chopped fresh methi leaves and tender stems

Method:
In a bowl, sieve wheat flour with salt. Add avocado and methi. Mix well and gently knead. Add couple of teaspoons of water if necessary to make firm dough. Keep covered for at least 15 minutes.

Divide the dough into 6 to 8 equal sized pieces and shape them into smooth rounds. On a wooden board or on a clean countertop, take a paratha dough piece, dust with flour and roll into 6″ diameter circle with a rolling pin.

Place a tava or griddle on stove-top and heat. When the tava is hot, place the paratha and cook on medium-heat to golden brown on both sides.

Serve hot with some curry or yogurt or pickle.

Avocado Methi Paratha with Methi Chole
Avocado Methi Paratha with Methi Chole ~ For Meal Yesterday

Methi Turai Dal (Menthi Beerakaaya Pappu)

Methi in my garden is now fully grown. Thanks to the frequent rains and pleasant weather we had for the past few weeks. I dug out few plants and plucked the fresh leaves and tender stems to prepare methi dal for today’s meal. I also added turai, because I thought mildly sweet turai would complement methi’s herbal flavor. Individually also they are best friends with toor dal. Together, methi and turai made an excellent team-toor dal day.

Methi is easy to grow in garden beds or in small containers, tastes good and known to balance blood sugar levels. If you have never tried growing methi, please do try this season. Go to an Indian grocery and purchase a packet of methi seeds. Soak some in water for a day. Wrap the soaked seeds in a wet muslin (cheese) cloth for a day or two. Seeds start to sprout. Plant the methi sprouts in soil where it gets sunlight. Water once a day. Within a month methi will be ready to harvest for dal, curry or roti.

Fresh Methi and Turai

Methi Turai Dal (Menthi Beerakaaya Pappu)
(for 2 or 4, for 4 to 2 meals)

Ingredients:
3/4 cup, toor dal (kandi pappu)
2 cups, fresh methi leaves and pinched tender stems
2 cups, turai pieces (peel the turai ridges and thinly slice)
1 small red onion or shallot. chopped
8 to 10, Indian or Thai green chillies, finely chopped
1 tablespoon, tamarind pulp
1/4 teaspoon turmeric

Method:
In a pressure cooker, take toor dal. Wash and clean the dal. Add the methi leaves, turai, onion, green chilli, tamarind and turmeric. Add about 2 cups of water. Mix. Close the lid and pressure-cook the dal to soft consistency. Allow the pressure to come down and then remove the lid. Add salt, about half teaspoon or to taste, and mash the cooked ingredients gently with a wood masher or a sturdy whisk.

Season the dal with garlic tadka. For garlic tadka, heat a tablespoon of peanut oil in a medium-sized pot. When oil is hot, add 2 finely chopped garlic cloves, 8 curry leaves, and a pinch each – cumin and mustard seeds. Saute the ingredients to fragrance. Add the methi-turai dal to this garlic tadka. Mix well and serve the methi-turai dal with rice or roti.

Methi Turai Dal with Rice
Methi-Turai Dal and Turai Curry with Rice ~ For Meal Today and
for Suma’s Delicious Dals From India Event

Methi Carrot

Homegrown Methi
Homegrown Methi

It was such a beautiful day!

“Pick me, pick me, please,” methi moved.

“Ok darling dainty methi.”

“I want to be with carrot today,” methi murmured.

“That sounds interesting. Your wish is my dish today. :)

“We now have green and gold. To complement, let’s invite the yellow, mellow mung,” methi recommended.

“Some protein? Good thinking. Let’s get all together.”

Plants brought into home. Leaves plucked and washed. Carrots grated. Yellow mung daal soaked in water for about an hour.

When it was time for nastha, kura was made in ten minutes for chapatis. Carrot’s sweetness, mung daal nuttiness combined with methi’s goodness. It was light, yet filling and extremely tasty. Loved my meal today.

Methi, Carrot and Mung Daal
Methi, Carrot and Mung Daal

Methi Carrot
(for one or two meals for two adults)

1 big bunch of fresh methi or about 4 cups of tightly packed methi leaves
3 carrots or 3 cups of grated carrot
1/2 cup yellow mung daal. (Soak in water for about an hour)
Oil, curry leaves, cumin seeds, hing, turmeric, salt, red chilli flakes and coconut

******

Heat a teaspoon of peanut oil in a wide, thick-bottomed skillet.

When oil is hot, add 10 curry leaves, half teaspoon of cumin seeds and pinch of hing. Sauté for a minute or so, until leaves become golden brown.

Add grated carrot, soaked mung daal and methi leaves to the skillet. Mix.

Add half teaspoon each – turmeric, salt and red chilli flakes. And a tablespoon of grated coconut. Mix thoroughly. Cover the skillet with lid. Keep the heat on medium and cook, mixing in-between. The moisture from carrots and methi steams the mung daal to tender. It would take about ten minutes.

Serve this light and delicious Indian dish with chapatis or rotis.

© Recipe and Photos Copyright 2009 Indira Singari

Methi Carrot with Chapati
Methi Carrot with Chapati and An Orange ~ Meal Today

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