Methi Matar Malai with Paneer is a creamy and luscious curry, made in white gravy packed with the goodness of fenugreek greens, green peas and soft paneer. This no onion no garlic curry is very subtle on flavors and can be loved by all; adults as well as kids. Try this rich creamy curry for your next get together or special occasion and wow your guests with its flavors.
This Methi Matar Malai Paneer is an adaptive version of popular Methi Matar Malai you will find in mostly all Indian restaurant menu which needs no introduction.
Methi Malai Matar Paneer tastes great and goes well with almost all Indian breads such as roti, paratha, poori, naan and jeera rice. I myself feel blessed when I see my daughter enjoying this dish, since it is loaded with highly nutritious ingredients.
Key Ingredients in Methi Matar Malai Recipe
The key ingredients in the Methi Matar Malai recipe are:
- Cashews and seeds – When ground together, they form the creamy base of this curry.
- Methi (fenugreek leaves) - has the most prominent flavors in all the ingredients and set the flavors of this recipe.
- Malai (heavy cream) - is what gives this dish a rich, creamy taste.
- Matar (green peas) - adds protein and texture to the curry.
- Paneer (cottage cheese) – Paneer makes an excellent addition to increase the overall protein of this vegetarian curry
Fenugreek (Methi) Benefits
Methi (fenugreek leaves): This plant is grown in countries across the globe, but the majority is cultivated and consumed in India. When fresh, Methi leaves have a light, sweet aroma with a mild, grassy and slightly bitter flavor with notes of celery and fennel. The health benefits of fenugreek are uncountable, commonly used to reduce inflammation inside the body, help improve blood sugar, and to help reduce digestive problems. Methi contains many powerful antioxidants which have great health benefits. Methi also laced with iron, copper, vitamin C, potassium, fiber, and manganese.
Health Benefits of other main Ingredients - Grean Peas and Paneer
Matar (green peas): Green peas are seeds that come from a legume plant, but they are most often consumed as a starchy vegetable. What makes peas unique from other vegetables is their high protein content. They are quite nutritious and contain a fair amount of fiber and antioxidants. Green peas are high in nutrients, and have properties that may reduce the risk of several diseases. Peas contain almost about every vitamin and mineral you required, in addition to significant amount of protein, and fibers.
Paneer (cottage cheese): An important part of the Indian cuisine in form of vegetarian protein. Paneer is loved by all kids, which makes an obvious choice to add in the curry. Paneer is nourishing and healthy, contains 80 %of protein and 20% of fat. Paneer contains all the nine essential amino acids, makes another great reason to add in the diet.
No Onion No Garlic Gravy Base Ingredients for Methi Matar Malai
Let’s check out what is in gravy base. I have used cashews, melon seeds, poppy seeds and hung curd to make no onion no garlic base for this curry. All these ingredients combined, make the base really creamy, rich, luscious and nutritious as well.
- Cashews are a powerhouse of vitamins, minerals, and other beneficial nutrients. Research shows that eating more nuts, such as cashews, can lower your risk for cardiovascular disease. This may occur by reducing blood pressure and cholesterol levels.
- Watermelon seeds are rich in nutrients like folate, iron, zinc, copper, magnesium, potassium. These seeds are considered to be highly nutritious, as they are rich in amino acids, proteins and vitamin B complex.
- Poppy Seeds: Also known as khus-khus provides calcium and phosphorus to meet 4% of daily needs from 1 teaspoon of quantity. These minerals work together to build strong bones. Poppy seeds also provide enough daily needs for iron and Zinc. Zinc helps to regulate growth and development of new cells and the structure of proteins.
- Hung Curd: Hung curd, or Greek yogurt, is strained to remove some of the watery whey, the denser and creamier remains that you get post the straining is referred to hung curd. Hung curd is a good source of protein and calcium.
Tips for Methi Matar Malai Paneer Recipe:
Methi matar malai paneer may sound very complex but trust me it is super simple to put together.
- If you like you can blanch the methi leaves first, but I prefer to sauté them over blanching. I have tried both ways and prefer sautéing over blanching. Sautéing Methi leaves with green peas and paneer, bind them together with flavors.
- While sautéing, don’t forget to add a tbs of sugar and some salt. Sugar, helps maintaining the color of greens as well as helps in reducing the bitterness of methi. While, salt will help release all the water from the methi leaves.
- Try not to sauté paneer for long time as cooking them longer make them chewy.
- Gently stir the paste and cook until it starts separating the oil. You will start seeing the oil between pan and the paste. If you paste is getting too thick and oil hasn’t separated yet, add 2 tbs of milk.
- When you add hung yogurt give it a quick mix and cook again. We want the nut and seed paste to be cooked but not the yogurt.
- If you add milk, then you can reduce the amount of heavy cream or malai because cashew paste and milk will bring enough richness and creaminess to the curry.
- You can double the quantity of gravy and save half for later use. Freeze it for longer duration storage.
- You can also use khoya in the gravy. However, Khoya is not always available or handy hence, I have used hung curd in this recipe.
Some FAQs associated sith Methi Matar Malai Recipes:
As the name suggestes, main ingredients of this recipe are methi (fenugreek leaves), matar (green peas) and paneer (indian cottage cheese. Additionally gravy is made from nuts and seed with some cream.
Dried kasoori methi leaves can be used if fresh methi is not available. Dried kasoori methi are so much more potent than the fresh ones. I would just use ¼th cup to replace 2 cups of fresh ones.
You can store this curry in fridge conveniently for 3-4 days. For longer period froze it. This is certainly a freezer friendly recipe, only thing to take care when freezing, always froze in a single portion size you are going to use, so that you don’t end up thawing the whole quantity.
If you would like to skip heavy cream use milk as liquid because cashews, seeds and milk would add enough creaminess to this dish.
Methi Matar Malai - No Onion No Garlic Recipe
- Sort and wash Fenugreek (methi) leaves and chop using either food processor or knife and keep aside.
- Soak cashews, Melon seeds and poppy seeds for 20 minutes in warm water.
- Heat 1 tbs ghee in a pan. Add fenugreek leaves and green peas. Sauté on medium heat.
- Add salt and sugar, sauté for 10 minutes until leaves are cooked and water from leaves evaporates.
- Add paneer and continue sauteing for some more time.
- Transfer the above mixture of fenugreek leaves, green peas and paneer in a bowl and keep it aside.
- Grind soaked cashews and seeds with green chilies and ginger. Keep it aside.
- Heat 2 tbs ghee again in the same pan and add asafoetida and cumin seeds.
- Once cumin seeds start spluttering add the ground paste of cashew into pan and cook until paste start separating oil from pan. TIP: You can add a 1 or 2 tablespoon of milk to adjust the consistency of gravy.
- Once cashew paste start separating oil add Greek yogurt and continue to cook.
- When whole mixture start separating oil again, add spices except Garam masala and give a good stir.
- Add a table spoon or two of milk, if you feel like gravy is getting really thick.
- Cashew nut and seeds gravy is ready. If you want you can double the batch of gravy and save half of it for later use.
- Now add the sautéed mixture of Fenugreek, green peas and paneer in the cashew gravy, stir everything together.
- Add milk to adjust consistency of gravy.
- Let the whole thing simmer for 15-20 minutes.
- Stir in, heavy whipping cream, garam masala and lemon juice.
- Before serving, garnish with some more heavy cream and pomegranate arils.