Botanical Name: Trigonella foenum-graecum
Common Name: Fenugreek
Hindi : Methi
Sanskrit : Medhika, Chandrika
Fenugreek (/ˈfɛnjʉɡriːk/; Trigonella foenum-graecum) is an annual plant in the family Fabaceae, with leaves consisting of three small ob ovate to oblong leaflets. It is cultivated worldwide as a semiarid crop, and its seeds are a common ingredient in dishes from the Indian Subcontinent in South Asia. Major fenugreek-producing countries are Afghanistan, Pakistan, India, Iran, Nepal, Bangladesh, Argentina, Egypt, France, Spain, Turkey, and Morocco. The largest producer is India, where the major producing states are Rajasthan, Gujarat, Uttarakhand, Uttar Pradesh, Madhya Pradesh, Maharashtra, Haryana, and Punjab. Rajasthan accounts for over 80% of India’s output.
Fenugreek is used as a herb (dried or fresh leaves), spice (seeds), and vegetable (fresh leaves, sprouts, and microgreens). Sotolon is the chemical responsible for fenugreek’s distinctive sweet smell.
Cuboid-shaped, yellow- to amber-colored fenugreek seeds are frequently encountered in the cuisines of the Indian Subcontinent, used both whole and powdered in the preparation of pickles, vegetable dishes, daals, and spice mixes such as panch phoron and sambar powder. They are often roasted to reduce bitterness and enhance flavor.
Fresh fenugreek leaves are an ingredient in some Indian curries. Sprouted seeds and microgreens are used in salads. When harvested as microgreens, fenugreek is known as samudra methi in Maharashtra, especially in and around Mumbai, where it is often grown near the sea in the sandy tracts, hence the name samudra, “ocean” in Sanskrit.Samudra methi is also grown in dry river beds in the Gangetic plains. When sold as a vegetable in India, the young plants are harvested with their roots still attached and sold in small bundles in the markets and bazaars. Any remaining soil is washed off to extend their shelf life.
In Turkish cuisine, fenugreek is used for making a paste known as çemen. Cumin, black pepper, and other spices are added into it, especially to make pastırma.
In Persian cuisine, fenugreek leaves are called شنبلیله (shanbalile). They are the key ingredient and one of several greens incorporated into ghormeh sabzi and eshkeneh, often said to be the Iranian national dishes.
In Egyptian cuisine, peasants in Upper Egypt add fenugreek seeds and maize to their pita bread to produce aish merahrah, a staple of their diet.
Fenugreek is used in Eritrean and Ethiopian cuisine. The word for fenugreek in Amharic is abesh (or abish), and the seed is used in Ethiopia as a natural herbal medicine in the treatment of diabetes.
Hi friends! Methi Aloo easy recipe yet very delicious!
Preparation Time: 15 minutes
Cooking Time: 20 minutes
Cuisine: North Indian, Punjabi
Course: main, vegetable dish
- 2 medium size Potatoes, washed, peeled and cut into small cubes
- 250 gms Fenugreek leaves/ methi, finely chopped
- 3 tbsp Mustard Oil
- 1/2 tsp Red chili powder
- 1/2 tsp Salt or/ to taste
- 1/4 tsp Asafetida
Wash and finely chop Fenugreek leaves/ methi. Keep aside.
Wash, peel and cut the potatoes into small cubes.
Heat Mustard oil in a wok / kadahi/non-stick pan. Add asafetida saute for few seconds add Fenugreek / Methi leaves and saute for two minutes. Add potatoes, red chili powder, salt and mix well . Stirring every 2-3 minutes or so cover and cook on low heat till potatoes are well cooked.
Serve hot with any Indian bread of your choice.
Health benefits of Fenugreek Leaves:
Fenugreek is rich in calcium, phosphorus, and a good source of Iron and vitamin C. Steaming is considered the best way of cooking this herb, as all the vitamins are retained. The protein content in dried fenugreek leaves is almost equal to that in pulses. The leaves are said to be cooling. They are very beneficial in the treatment of indigestion, flatulence and sluggish liver. Fenugreek leaves help treat mouth ulcers. The leaves also help in the formation of blood. The leaves, being rich in iron, are very beneficial for anaemia.
Fenugreek Leaves Home Remedies
- Make a paste of fresh fenugreek leaves. Apply on scalp, leave for 30 minutes, and then wash. This strengthens hair and gets rid of dandruff.
- The freshly ground paste of fenugreek leaves, applied on the face before going to bed, prevents pimples and black heads.
- Make an infusion of the fenugreek leaves. Use this as a gargle for mouth ulcers.
- Due to its cooling properties, applying a poultice made of the fenugreek leaves is an excellent home remedy to heal burns and swellings.
- Fenugreek leaves cooked with green onion stalks, are very good for clearing Constipation.
- A tbsp of fenugreek leaves juice, taken with 1-2 black raisins, relieves dysentry.
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