I had to pick up a bunch of these slender carrots from the store and combine them with addictively bitter fresh methi (fenugreek) leaves into this delicious stir fry. An otherwise plain-looking side dish which in reality in such a perfect balance of texture and flavors, it formed a part of our winter meals just once or twice in the season because growing up, carrots were usually consumed in preparing luscious halwa or tangy winter pickles. Or mostly mum would simply cut up raw carrots into sticks and squirted fresh lemon juice & dash of chaat masala on top for a healthy snack in between meals.
Not having it often could be the reason it is one of my favorite things to prepare during colder months.Who knows? But this sweet-spicy medley, very popular in north indian parts of India, when served with piping hot yellow dal, few cut up hard-boiled eggs and hot rotis forms a super satisfying home meal in addition to being wholesome and nourishing.
I love the robust choice winter vegetables bring with them. I could go on about my love for produce at this time of the year – fleshy turnips, sweet beetroots and leafy greens.While many people find comfort in meats and poultry at this time when its dull and grey or perhaps snowy outside if you are on the east coast, I need a hearty stock of vegetables to strive and feel energetic through the season.If you are in India, where unlike here, fresh peas make an appearance in the winter months, you could be in for a really treat if you plan to make this along with those juicy, raspberry red carrots, native to the asian subcontinent which I am still to spot here.
- In this recipe, you could substitute methi leaves with any bitter greens of choice – kale or turnip, radish greens work wonderfully.To balance out the sweetness from carrots and peas, you do need a bitter element so do not skip the greens. Sometimes I add diced up sweet potatoes or white potatoes for an earthy texture, making it sweet, spicy, bitter and deliciously savory side to go along dal – rice or plain parathas(flatbreads).
- Talking of fresh produce, I had a chance to visit the weekly farmers market at the San Francisco Ferry Building during our trip to bay area last week. What a beautiful, fresh and gorgeous spread of produce, meats,bread and condiments it was.We spent almost half a dat there sampling cheeses, raw honey, bread & hot pizza from the stand. Here are a few pictures for you guys.
- Printable Recipe
- Gajar Methi Matar
- A simply spiced carrots, peas and fresh fenugreek leaves dish with warm tones of ginger & cumin which can be served as a side or a warm winter salad.
- Ingredients (Serves 2-3)
- 4-5 medium-sized carrots (I used a bunch which had 6-7 small, slender carrots)
- 3/4 cup fresh or frozen peas
- 1 cup packed fresh methi leaves, picked
- 2 tbsp mustard oil (or olive oil)
- 1/4 tsp methi dana(fenugreek seeds)
- 1 tsp cumin seeds
- 1/4 tsp hing (asafoetida powder)
- 2 fat garlic cloves, finely chopped
- 1 small roma tomato, finely chopped (yield about 2.5 tbsp)
- 1/4 tsp turmeric powder
- 1/2 tsp red chilli powder (or paprika, adjust to tolerance)
- 1/2″ fresh ginger shoot, finely chopped
- salt to taste
- 1/4 tsp garam masala (optional)
- 1/4 tsp amchoor (dry mango powder to taste, or use fresh lemon juice to taste at the end)
- Notes –
- Use any bitter robust green like kale (blanched) or radish & turnip greens in place of fenugreek.
- We like this dish more on the sweet bitter side than with tang. Even though tomatoes & amchoor balance the sweet, depending on how acidic your tomato is, just adjust the amount of lemon or amchoor. You may or might not need it at all too.