This recipe for Aloo Methi comes from Farhana Sahibzada’s new cookbook Flavorful Shortcuts to Indian/Pakistani Cooking. Sahibzada says it works great as both a side dish and main.
“Aloo Methi is a mildly flavored vegetable dish cooked in a base of sautéed onions, ginger and garlic and seasoned with mild spices and fresh herbs,” Sahibzada writes. “The secret seasoning is a light sprinkle of dried fenugreek leaves (dried fenugreek leaves labeled as ‘Kasoori Methi’ are available at all Indian/Pakistani spice stores) at the end.”
Serving Suggestions: Serve with rice, chappatis (Indian flat bread) or pita bread
¼ cup olive oil
½ teaspoon cumin seeds
¼ cup chopped cilantro
1 tablespoon chopped fresh ginger root
1 bunch green onions chopped (optional)
1 medium sized(brown) onion thin sliced or finely chopped
1 teaspoon pureed ginger
1 teaspoon pureed garlic
1 teaspoon salt
½ teaspoon crushed red pepper
1 teaspoon coriander powder
½ teaspoon turmeric powder
4 white potatoes cut in chunks
1 16 oz package chopped frozen spinach,(covered with a wet paper towel and microwaved for 5-6 minutes in a bowl with ¼ cup water) .
1 tablespoon dried fenugreek leaves (AKA: Methi, available at Indian spice stores)
1 Serrano chili seeded and chopped
Water as cooking
Heat oil in a saucepan until hot but not smoking; add cumin seeds, one tablespoon of chopped cilantro, chopped ginger and chopped green onions, sauté herbs for a minute to help flavor the oil. Add chopped brown onion and sauté for about 5-7 minutes, until most of the water from onion has evaporated and it starts to turn a light gold at the edges. (As oil in the pot begins to re-surface around the sautéed onions, you are ready to proceed to the next step) Add pureed ginger and garlic and stir often as you sauté the mix for a few seconds to a minute or two. Add salt, crushed red pepper, ground coriander, turmeric and continue to sauté. Keep an eye on spice mixture as you sauté, add a few drops of water every couple of minutes to keep it from sticking to the bottom of the pan, and continue to sauté for 3-5 minutes. Add potatoes and coat them well with the spices, cook uncovered for 3-5 minutes. Add 2-4 tablespoons of water cover the pot and let potatoes cook for 9-12 minutes on a low flame (uncover occasionally and stir every few minutes for even cooking). Add the prepared spinach, fold it in the spice mixture with potatoes. Cover the pan and let cook for another 15-20 minutes on a medium low flame. Check periodically and give it a stir to ensure even cooking and to keep the dish from sticking to the bottom of the pan. Vegetables generally cook in their own liquid but add a few drops of water if needed or if the mix seems too dry. Inset the tip of a well pointed knife in a potato piece to check for doneness. The knife should insert with ease and the potato wedge must not offer resistance. Sprinkle with dried fenugreek leaves (Methi). Turn heat off, cover and let sit for a few minutes before serving.
Store leftovers in the refrigerator in an air tight container for up to 2-4 days.