There are some memories which never fade and some which just evanesce into oblivion. But smell can be a powerful memory trigger. Smell so rustic and comforting that deep buried images stand bare and bigger, usually leaving you distraught. You will be tormented and distressed till you put all those cognizant images back to where they belong.
Now before you speculate extraneous theories, let me clarify. The smell that invoked such strong visuals of my past, was nothing more than potatoes and fenugreek being sautéed on a particularly hot humid day. It wafted from somewhere above. Where, who, when and how … I did bother, but soon all that dissipated when flashbacks of the mother’s kitchen loomed up at me. Someone was making food just like my mothers – this thought was eerily comforting.
I mean, how weird, I tell myself. Whats there to get excited to smell food like what your mother cooked for you. But I was.
Aloo methi. Something so traditional and homey and simple….now why am I making a post for this? I am making this for all those young people out there who suddenly-mindlessly crave for food that they have grown up with. That cozy feeling – that you get out of familiarity.
And for documentation purposes too 😉
15 years down the line, I doubt if the daughter will ever call and ask for a recipe. She most probably will scan her favourite sites and lastly come to her mums where she will read this and nod and say yes, I miss my mother’s cooking too. And now I’m just being too hopeful! Am I not??! Never mind.
Just potatoes and fresh fenugreek leaves sautéed in some powerful mustard oil, with a bit of all Indian spices, and look how I am dancing with my words! Well, the above picture shows you all that you need to make this wonderful side to your everyday bread or rice.
There are plenty of variations for this vegetable side or sabzi as we call it. Mother used mustard oil, and no onions or garlic or any other paraphernalia for this dish. She kept it simple and it worked fabulously. A drizzle of lime and some fresh salad is all that you need to make your day.
- 2 cups par boiled potatoes, diced into medium sized chunks
- 2 cups of fenugreek leaves, picked, washed and roughly chopped
- 2-3 green chilies, minced – optional
- 1 big whole red chilli
- 2 tbsp mustard oil or any other oil would also do.
- 1/2 tsp turmeric powder
- 1-2 tsp red chill powder or as desired
- 2 tsp coriander powder
- 1/2 tsp garam masala
- 1/2 tsp cumin seeds and mustard seeds mixed
- 1/4 tsp asafoetida powder – I don’t skip this!
- salt to taste.
- Lime wedges to serve with
In a large skillet or pan, drop a tsp of oil. Gently roast the potatoes till it gets a golden coating all over it. Regular tossing and turning help. Once done, remove from the pan and keep aside.
In the same skillet, heat rest of the oil. Crackle cumin and mustard seeds. Add asafoetida and whole dried red chili. Fry chopped fenugreek leaves and green chilies till they wilt. Now add potatoes, along with all the masalas and salt. Saute for another minute or so.
Serve with chappathis or rice or any bread.
Note: if desired, 2 tsp chopped garlic can be added before adding the fenugreek leaves.
Like someone rightly said We live on the leash of our senses. Taking this wonderful aromatic side to pair with Angie’s gorgeous phulkas, for her 41st Friday Fiesta. come take a look, she make these chappathis and every single one puffs up! P
Happy Cooking dear foodies!
Looks amazing 🙂
I try this often Namrata and yes its a homey dish, calming, comforting. Im sure the daughter will check only her mums website and nothing beyond. 🙂
Welcome to Fiesta Friday #41, and thanks for your wonderful contribution. It does look very comforting and with all those spices thrown in, it definitely will be one that won’t last too long. I hope you’ve had an opportunity to look at some of the other wonderful dishes at the party.
I hear you when you say how certain smells evoke sweet memories. And don’t worry, Milee is sure to treasure this online journal of yours for years to come 🙂
Comforting, familiar and absolutely delicious 😊
I can see how these simple ingredients are pure comfort food for you, sometimes its the simplest dishes that evoke the most comforting emotions, thank you for sharing, and as always photos are so beautiful 🙂
Aloo methi ! Ah ! What’s not to love about it? I and Aanya (my older one) are ardent fans of this sabzi! I make it with sukhi methi though here. So right! I often think that too when my girls grow up and stay away, they might come back to my recipes to cook some “ma ke haath ka khana”.
This has a few spices that I’ve never used before…will have to check those out now! 🙂
Don’t we all crave for mom’s cooking? Although, daughters tend to appreciate a mother more when they raise kids of their own. 🙂 Beautifully captured also methi!
Crisp clear photos and a lovely recipe! I share your love of smelling potato and methi leaves being sauteed…ahhh so good! I am sure your daughter will look back at these dishes with love and nostalgia!
Your post is as good as this aloo-methi, I enjoyed reading it.
I know exactly what you are talking about! love aloo methi not just for what it is but also for what it brings to the table!