Fenugreek or Methi leaves are regularly consumed by Indians for its health benefits.
Methi is high in fiber and slightly bitter in taste. Foods that are bitter in taste are usually good for controlling blood sugar in diabetics. Methi leaves are not as bitter as bitter gourd / karela. It is slightly bitter and usually cooked along with dal or added to roti dough or adai batter to mask the bitter taste.
Methi leaves also help relieve menstrual cramps if consumed regularly.
If you are living in a tropical country, include this regularly to keep your body cool.
This is a stir fry recipe that can be had as a side dish for rice. Methi is rich in fiber and since the dish also has moong bean that is high in protein, rice and methi stir fry can be considered a well balanced meal.
Wash moong dal.
Soak moong dhal in a bowl of water first (if possible warm or hot water). Let it soak and soften while you get the other ingredients ready. This will reduce cooking time.
Cleaning menthi leaves takes time. So it is not advisable to cook it during morning rush hour. Clean it while watching TV or assisting children with homework and refrigerate it in air tight boxes.
A bundle of menthi leaves is enough for a family of 4.
Before placing it on the chopping board, chop off the roots and thick stem that usually has some garden mud.
I usually wash the leaves twice. Purely personal preference.
Completely immerse the greens in water for effective cleaning. Use a tall vessel if necessary. The greens should not be floating as shown in the picture. Press with your hand so it gets washed and the sand settles down to the bottom.
After washing scoop out the greens without disturbing the sand that has settled at the bottom.
How to clean Menthi / Methi leaves
Unlike other greens like spinach, methi stalks are really strong and will not become soft when cooked. Some people only use the leaves. I include the thin stalks when I make stir fry.
But when I add methi leaves to Adai batter or Chapathi dough, I use only the leaves.
Discard the thick stalk – Red arrow in picture points to this.
Use the thinner stalks – Green arrows point to them.
Once the stalks are removed,
Wash the leaves again.
Chop them or use them as such.
Ingredients for tempering
Medium sized onion – 1 chopped
Red chilli – 1 or 2
Urad dal / black gram dal – 1 teaspoon
Mustard seeds – 1 /2 teaspoon
Cumin seeds – 1 teaspoon
Heat oil and add mustard seeds and when it has stopped spluttering, add red chili, cumin seeds followed by urad dal (black gram)
Then add onions and stir fry till they are cooked.
Pour the water used for soaking dal and bring it to a boil. When it comes to a rolling boil, add the dhal too.
Cook covered for a few minutes till the moong dal is cooked. If necessary, sprinkle some water.
Now the dal is cooked. It is not too soggy and not too crunchy.
Now add the menthi leaves
Stir fry till the leaves are cooked. Add necessary amount of salt. No need to add water. The water that oozes out of the greens is enough.
Healthy and tasty menthi stir fry is ready. Goes well with steamed rice. Enjoy!!