Monday, October 20, 2008

Methi Malai Matar - a green delight


As much as I love to cook and eat comfort food, I love to cook and enjoy party food as well. Great parties begin with great food, as food is the main spotlight of many parties. Preparing a party food is another form of amusement to me since it gives me an opportunity to try some colourful dishes that look fantastic on the table. It sure also gives me a chance to try those special dishes that can't be prepared on a daily basis, but still certainly deserve a spot on the table for special occasions or even for a casual evening party. But it certainly requires some level of planning, well ahead. I definitely enjoy hosting parties and having some great time with friends, yet can't take any last minute surprises. Everything has to be pre-planned. I prepare the menu atleast a couple of days before, so that I can plan for grocery shopping, if any, as well as manage my cooking time efficiently.

But I have to admit that though I enjoy cooking for a party, it is definitely an exhausting day for me many times. I often recall those days when I grew up in India, and wonder how do they cook such an elaborate south indian feast with very little help and still manage to serve with a smile in their face! I probably would have turned cranky by that time! For that reason, I avoid spending a lot of time in the kitchen on the day of my party and usually finish all my chopping, soaking and my pressure cooking tasks the previous day, so that they are ready to be just seasoned or stir-fried on the party day.

Two kinds of people make any party very special - those who love to cook and those who love to eat! Last weekend, we had some good friends come over to my place for dinner with their families. It was a fabulous evening and I was quite happy that everything went as planned. All of them are in my close knit friends circle, and like me, they are food lovers too :) So we always feel free in each others presence and are unfussy about food as well. And the best part is that we all get inquisitive about good food and happily exchange our secret recipes ;-) Even a slight variation to our regular food could give such a fantastic twist to the entire dish and thats something I'm always willing to learn from others.

Alright, about the recipe.. For the party, one of the veg curries I'd made was Methi malai matar. I often make it at home too whenever I am in the mood for something different. But this recipe undoubtedly looks great on a party table, especially if you can decorate with a twist of cream on the top. Fresh methi leaves are ideal, but you can use kasuri methi (dried methi leaves) as well, and comes out as great as the fresh leaves. I love the slight bitterness of the methi leaves combined with the sweet taste from the peas. Very simple and flavorful recipe.

This entry goes for EasyCrafts "WYF - Party food" event.

Ingredients:
  • Peas - 1.5 cup
  • Chopped Methi leaves - 1/2 cup
  • Curd - 2 tbsp
  • Cream - 1/2 cup
  • Onions - 1 medium
  • Ginger/Garlic paste - 1 tbsp
  • Green chillies - 2
  • Cumin seeds - 1 tsp
  • Corriander seeds - 1 tsp
  • Chilli powder - 1/2 tsp
  • Corriander powder - 2 tsp
Procedure:

  • Grind the ginger, garlic and g.chillies together. Set aside.
  • Boil the peas with some salt and set aside.
  • Heat oil in a pan, season with cumin seeds. Crush the corriander seeds slightly and add this to the oil.
  • Add the chopped onions and fry for a few mins. Then add the ginger, garlic and g.chillies paste and fry well for a couple mins.
  • Add methi leaves or kasuri methi and fry well for until the methi leaves lose shape.
  • Add the spice powders, salt and mix well.
  • Add curd and fry for 2 mins. Cover and let it cook for 3 - 4 mins.
  • Now add the cooked peas, some water and let it boil for 2 - 3 mins.
  • Finally add the cream and mix well. Remove from heat.

Serve with rotis.

28 comments:

Nidhi said...

Methi malai matar. One of my favs. Remembered the one you get in Kolhapur's Victor Palace....Yummy :)

Mahimaa's kitchen said...

good you posted this recipe.. i have been wanting to make this ever since i had it in an indian restaurant in thailand. it was so good. your recipe looks simple and delicious. do we have to use frozen peas or dried peas? pls reply to this question either in my blog or mail me.

Laavanya said...

I'm like you.. love to cook for parties but it definitely has to be pre-planned and i need to be mentally prepared.. a last minute thing would throw me off completely :)

I've not had very good luck with this dish before.. must give it another shot.. looks perfect.

Sireesha said...

Mehi malai matar looks rich and very delicious..

Pearlsofeast said...

Me too also like to host parties and as you said I prepare and plan ahead and not stress myself on the party day. I love this dish and definetly looks tempting.

DEESHA said...

i have always loved methi matar malai .. very rich N creamy

Usha said...

I try to prep the day before the party too so that the day of the party is easier to handle...the methi malai matar looks absolutely perfect..very tempting :)

Happy cook said...

Yeah i love to give parties, but as you said one is really exhausted after it especially if there is a variety of courses.
But still i Love giving parties especially to see friends and family having lot of fun.
Yeah in india most of them have servants unlike us were we have to do everything ourselve :-)

Cham said...

If it is last minute party plan i always end up with fried rice and some simple things.
The MMM dish is very scruptious! Definetly a party food :)

anudivya said...

Cooking for parties as you said is very exhausting, I in fact start cooking a couple of days in advance.
The gravy looks really yummy.

meeso said...

I wish I could taste some of your party dishes!!! You have made one of my absolute favorites right here :)

Ramya Vijaykumar said...

Thanks for visiting my blog, you have a lovely space... Methi Malai Matar is delectable and nice pic too...

Vij said...

Tempting gravy!! perfect consistency! yummmmmmy!

Uma said...

gorgeous curry. looks mouth-watering.

n33ma said...

Lovely presentation....I love methi in every dish.I belong to love to cook and love to eat categories...:)

raaji said...

soooooooo easy (bcoz am so lazy)with few ingredients.....love sth like this.....

Gita's Kitchen said...

I too love entertaining but sometimes I dont prep ahead and do it the same day itself. I will try your method next time. The methi malai mattar looks mouth-watering :)

Sukanya Ramkumar said...

Methi mattar is my fav. Urs looks so good. Nice picture. Liked the bowl so much...

JZ @ Tasty treats said...

i loved your narration abt cooking on the party day! i guess we are similar in that way.....I hate pressure!! ;-) i dont know many veg curries, but urs sound wonderful...thanks for sharing with us too!! :-)

Jeena said...

Looks totally fabulous I love the colour. :-)

Sujatha said...

JZ! Nice to see you back :) And thanks for your nice words.. Waiting to see more of your yummy recipes, with your same amazing presentation! :)

RAKS KITCHEN said...

Even I wonder how our mother,aunts,MIl cook a fab spread and they will never get exhausted....
Methi matar malai looks yummy!

Simran said...

Hi Sujatha

I have a special thanks to send your way...for you were the 100th commentor on my blog. Isn't that exciting; 100 separate people have stopped by my blog and left a comment.

This is my first time on yours, and I completely love your methi matar.

Sujatha said...

Wow, thats nice to hear Simran! Thats something to remember about our first contact :)

Thanks for visiting my blog and your nice words.. :)

Uj said...

Hi, Methi matar malai looks yummy. I was looking for this recipe since quite some time.. will try your method soon. Thanks for posting..

easycrafts said...

Looks so good...thanks for participating

Mahimaa's kitchen said...

I tried this gravy and it was just out of the world Sujatha.. no other words to say.. tooo good!! thanks for the reicpe. i have put the pic in my blog. check it out.

Sujatha said...

yey! Thats so nice to hear, Mahimaa! I love it too.. :)