I was a disaster. A recidivous disaster in their kitchen. Not that I have redeemed myself or anything but of course I am not that clueless anymore. 10 years back, newly married, coming from a disparate environment and having no clue what they eat or how they eat has its effects – For my part I did well in my own pond. My parents gratified with me exorbitant cheer and praises, in effect rendering me totally naive to any critique or opinions. But the women of the house I married into, did what they had to do. They taught me. Well. I can never equal their expertise or their flair, but here I am, attempting to recreate the mother in law’s signature dish with a bit of both, confidence and apprehension.
Muthiya literally means a fist. When grated minced vegetables are mixed with smashed rice and flour, you fist them, make little logs to be steamed and then tempered. That’s muthiya. They are delicious, healthy and a wonderful party appetiser. In his house, they make it for dinner with spiced buttermilk curry or kadhi as they call it.
Truthfully, I sucked at making this. I just didn’t get it! you make a dough, steam and then cool and then temper.. for what? A little snack. Nah! too much work. And I am lazy – remember. So when we lived on our own, I dodged this snack as much as possible. And the few times that I did pursue, I failed so miserably that I vowed never to make them again.
Well, bottle gourd and fenugreek leaves are not exactly my child’s favourite. So when I get to incorporate these two in one and make something appealing out of it, I decided to attempt this formidable dish, one more time. Thankfully I saved it. Relieved that I would make it yet again with a not so surly outlook and a dour mind.
What I love about this snack is the tempering or seasoning! Vaghaar or tadka or chonk as it is called in India, the finale dish is brought about by heating oil, spluttering mustard, a bit of sesame and fenugreek seeds, along with the very aromatic curry leaf and some asafoetida! Slices of the steamed dumplings are then thrown into the hot oil-mustrad-sesame mix. It is so nutty and fresh and earthy. You need to have a slice or two to know what I mean. 🙂
Yea, so the ingredients for this one might not be in your spice box or pantry if you are not an Indian. But things like asafoetida and sesame and fenugreek make this dish what it is. So please go ahead and get it, make sure you have it when you try this one out.
As I proof read my write up, I realise the incessant rambling about how long and tedious it is to make this, might have dismayed you to ever attempt it. But I was digressing from the truth. The whole truth being that it is a super cool snack and all that you need is a bit of planning to complete any task. I make this for her lunch box at 6 in the morning – yea of course, with a bit of an outline.
The Recipe –
For the dumplings –
For the Seasoning: 2 tsp oil, 1 tsp asafoetida or hing, 1/2 tsp mustard seeds, 1/4 tsp fenugreek seeds, 1 tsp sesame seeds, 5-6 curry leaves, 1 whole red chili, 1 tbsp coriander leaves to garnish.
Make a dough of all the ingredients listed for dumplings using curd instead of water to bring it all together. If you add too much flour the result will be hard difficult to swallow kinda muthiyas. And if the flour is too less, you will have great difficulty in bringing it all together. So add the flour little by little, to make sure the muthiyas turn out soft yet firm to hold a shape.
Once done. Keep a wide wok on fire, fill it partially with water, place a ring or some holder in it.
On a greased plate, grab fistfuls of the dough and shape them into small sized logs. Place them carefully on the plate. Do that with all of the dough. Once the plate is full, keep the plate inside the wok. Cover and steam for at least 30 minutes. Keep checking at regular intervals for water at the bottom.
After 30 minutes, remove the plate full of dumplings. Cool the plate. Once cooled, slice the logs into bite size rounds. Taste one to see if the spices and salt are in check.
Get ready with your seasoning. In a wide wok, heat oil. Splutter fenugreek seeds and sesame seeds till just right about crisp. Take care not to burn them. Throw in mustard seeds, asafoetida, curry leaves, whole red chilli and sauté for a minute or two. If the dumplings lack in salt or chilies, then sprinkle the necessary spice over the steamed dumplings before adding them to the tempering.
Now add the sliced dumplings. Toss and serve with coriander leaves garnish.
Note: you can prepare them ahead of time and take it along with you for a party or a get together. They require no re heating. They taste good even when cold.
Note: Green chutney or ketchup or kadhi/spiced buttermilk can be served along with it.
Note: For a detailed step by step recipe, click here.
Taking this to lovely Angie’s Fiesta Friday #33. Once there, drool over these incredible rainbow pizzas that she dished up to satiate her little girl’s whim 🙂 They look SO gorgeous! And a whole list of beautiful food awaits. You just have to look.
I can eat any number of methi muthiya in one sitting. Now to try this variation. I have never tasted Muthiya with lauki in in so it will be quite a change. 🙂
The ingredients, process and innovation sounds absolutely perfect….super yummy muthiyas…
use of rice gives me a tip of using often leftover rice and the use if lauki helps me realize how to save them from never getting used otherwise;)
I am nodding my head in agreement to what you have written, Namrata. Getting married was an eye-opener for me too!
The dumplings look delightful. Beautifully photographed!!
Love it! I am so
Making these with zucchini
I am so making these with zucchini
You make everything look so pretty!
I’ve never seen this dish. Looks awesome, I love the steaming part and the flexibility of preparing ahead of time. Namrata, could some other flour like ragi be used instead of wheat, or do you think it needs gluten to hold it?
Those muthiyas look incredibly good Namrata! Love the photos too. Can zucchini be used as a substitute for lauki, cos I don’t think I can find it here & I want to try this out so badly 🙂
I haven’t tasted this.. Looks super tempting dear. As always your pic steal the show
Im in for the baked mutiya party…in love with these savoury goodie..fab recipe – Love Vanita
Interesting recipe! Looks great and tasty on sticks! 🙂
What an interesting dish, I have never come across this looks delicious and complicated, good for you your inlaws should be proud 🙂
Lovely recipe and amazing pictures! Nice finger food surely approved by my taste buds. It is good to learn the traditional recipes because those are the tastes that link us back to our family.
This looks delicious and healthy, but I will never make it. Too much of work, and you know me – lazy bumm number one!! 😉
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