Methi Matar Malai

4.91 from 11 votes

Methi Matar Malai is a rich, creamy North Indian curry made using fresh fenugreek leaves (methi) and green peas. Try this restaurant-style recipe in the comfort of your home.

Here are some more methi recipes: Aloo Methi Sabzi, Methi Paneer, Baingan Methi, Kashmiri Methi Chaman, and Gajar Methi.

Methi Matar Malai served in a bowl.
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Eating out was a rare event while I was growing up. It was reserved for special occasions like anniversaries, birthdays, and festivals.

My mother, who is a vegetarian and not very fond of paneer, used to order this Methi Matar Malai curry. We sisters would leave our robust, spicy, non-veg curries and go for it.

The creamy, sweetish, and mildly spiced curry paired very well with the crispy naan, and it was also a respite for our taste buds burning from the spices in the curries we ordered.

When I started to explore cooking, it was one of the first curries I learned to make. My mother approves of it, and now, although we go out to eat very often, my homemade recipe is still her favorite.

About Methi Matar Malai

Rich, creamy, sweet, and very slightly bitter, Methi Matar Malai is a North Indian curry popularly served at Indian restaurants.

It is a perfectly balanced curry, with the bitterness of methi (fenugreek leaves) balanced by the sweetness of matar (green peas) and malai (cream).

This vegetarian and gluten-free curry comes together in just 30 minutes. Once you make it at home using my easy recipe, you will never order it from a restaurant again.

Keep in mind that this is not your everyday curry. It is rich and heavy and best made for special days when you are not counting calories.

Serve it with Plain Naan, Lachha Paratha, or Peas Pulao.

Ingredients

You will get all the ingredients to make methi matar malai at any Indian grocery store.

Fenugreek Leaves (Methi) – Try to use fresh fenugreek leaves (fresh methi leaves) to make this curry, but if they’re unavailable, you can also use frozen leaves. Kasuri methi can also be used if fresh or frozen leaves are unavailable.

If using Kasoori methi, soak it in warm water for 10 minutes to rehydrate the leaves. Squeeze and add it to the gravy.

Green Peas (Matar) – You can use fresh or frozen green peas. Frozen peas can be used directly, but if you use fresh green peas, cook them until tender before adding them to the curry.

NoteFreeze green peas when they are in season to use them throughout the year using my simple recipe.

One great substitute for green peas in this curry is steamed sweet corn kernels, which also taste delicious.

Unsweetened Heavy Cream adds richness and creaminess to methi matar malai curry. Replace it with milk to make the curry lighter. You can also use malai (fresh cream) instead of heavy cream. Just blend it in a blender to make it smooth.

Ground Masala Paste – To make the base of methi mutter malai curry, make a ground masala paste using onions, fresh ginger, garlic, cashew nuts, tomatoes, and green chilies.

Some people also add white poppy seeds to the masala paste to make it richer.

Other Ingredients – You will also need some basic ingredients such as oil, green cardamoms (hari elaichi), cinnamon (dalchini), salt, Kashmiri red chili powder, garam masala powder, sugar, and freshly squeezed lime juice.

You can add a little turmeric powder to get a bright yellow curry.

Add paneer cubes to this recipe and make methi malai matar paneer. You can also add corn kernels, baby corn, mushrooms, etc.

How To Make Methi Matar Malai

Preparation

Start by cleaning the methi leaves. Discard the hard stems as they are bitter, and keep the leaves and soft, tender stems. Wash the leaves 2-3 times with water to remove any mud.

To remove insecticides, add 1 teaspoon vinegar or baking soda to the water while washing the leaves.

Now drain the leaves well and measure 2 cups of packed leaves. Chop the leaves finely using a knife.

Note – Chopping the leaves finely is essential as we will not puree them later. If they’re too big, they won’t feel good while eating.

Cook 1 cup of green peas in water until tender if using fresh peas. If using frozen, rinse with water.

Slice the onions and chop ginger, garlic, green chilies, and tomatoes.

Gather the remaining ingredients.

Cook The Methi Leaves

Heat 5-6 cups of water in a large pot over high heat.

When it comes to a boil, add chopped methi leaves and peas and cook for 2 minutes.

Drain the water and run the leaves under tap water in a colander to stop cooking. Drain and keep aside.

Chopped fenugreek leaves and peas cooking in water.

Cook The Other Ingredients

Heat 3 cups of water in the same pot over high heat.

When it comes to a boil, add the following ingredients and cook for 5 minutes.

  • 1 cup of sliced onions
  • 1 teaspoon chopped ginger
  • 1 teaspoon chopped garlic
  • ½ cup cashew nuts
  • ½ cup chopped tomatoes
  • 2 teaspoon chopped green chilies

Drain and keep aside.

Onion, ginger, garlic, cashew nuts, tomatoes and green chilies boiling in water.

Make The Masala Paste

Add the boiled onion-tomato mixture to a blender jar along with ¼ cup water.

Onion tomato mixture added to a blender along with ¼ cup water.

Blend to make a smooth paste. Scrape the sides of the blender a few times while blending.

Smooth onion tomato paste.

Make The Curry

Heat 4 tablespoon oil in a medium pan over medium-high heat.

Once the oil is hot, add 3 green cardamoms and a 1-inch piece of cinnamon stick and fry for 3-4 seconds.

You can crush the cardamoms and cinnamon lightly for a more intense flavor.

Green cardamoms and cinnamon added to hot oil.

Add the onion-tomato paste to the pan and cook for 3- 4 minutes, stirring frequently.

Onion tomato paste added to the pan.

Now add the following ingredients and cook for a minute.

  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon Kashmiri red chili powder
  • ½ teaspoon garam masala powder
Salt, Kashmiri red chili powder and garam masala powder added to the pan.

Add 1 cup of water and cook for 2-3 minutes.

Water added to the pan.

Add the cooked methi and peas to the pan and cook for 2-3 minutes.

Cooked methi and peas added to the pan.

Now add ½ cup unsweetened heavy cream and 1 teaspoon sugar and cook for a minute.

Heavy cream and sugar added to the pan.

Add 1 teaspoon freshly squeezed lime juice and mix well.

Check for salt and add more if required.

Garnish with heavy cream swirls. Serve hot with naan or laccha paratha.

Ready methi matar malai.

Frequently Asked Questions

What if the methi is too bitter?

Methi leaves have a slight natural bitterness, but sometimes, they are quite bitter and difficult to eat. In that case, mix the chopped methi leaves with 1 teaspoon salt and keep them aside for 10 minutes. The leaves will release some water. Squeeze the leaves and use them in the cooking. The bitterness will disappear.

How to make vegan matar methi malai?

You can skip heavy cream from the recipe to make a vegan version. Add extra cashew paste, coconut cream, or coconut milk at the end to add creaminess.

How to make methi malai matar without onion and garlic?

If you don’t prefer to use onion and garlic in your recipes, you can skip adding them to this curry and make a Jain-style methi malai matar. It tastes delicious without these two ingredients, too.

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Methi Matar Malai is a rich, creamy North Indian curry made using fresh fenugreek leaves (methi) and green peas. Try this restaurant-style recipe in the comfort of your home.
4.91 from 11 votes

Methi Matar Malai Recipe (Fenugreek Green Peas Curry)

Methi Matar Malai is a rich, creamy North Indian curry made using fresh fenugreek leaves (methi) and green peas. It pairs beautifully with naan or lachha paratha. Try this restaurant-style recipe in the comfort of your home.
Prep: 10 minutes
Cook: 30 minutes
Total: 40 minutes
Servings: 4 people

Ingredients 

  • 2 cups rinsed and finely chopped methi (fenugreek leaves) (fresh or frozen, packed)
  • 1 cup frozen matar (green peas) (if using fresh peas, cook them in water until tender.)
  • 1 cup sliced onions
  • 1 teaspoon chopped ginger
  • 1 teaspoon chopped garlic
  • ½ cup cashew nuts
  • ½ cup chopped tomatoes
  • 2 teaspoons chopped green chilies
  • 4 tablespoons oil
  • 3 whole green cardamoms (hari elaichi)
  • 1 inch piece of cinnamon stick (dalchini)
  • 1 teaspoon salt (or to taste)
  • 1 teaspoon Kashmiri red chili powder
  • ½ teaspoon garam masala powder
  • 1 teaspoon sugar
  • ½ cup unsweetened heavy cream (or whisked malai)
  • 1 teaspoon freshly squeezed lime juice
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Instructions 

Cook The Methi Leaves

  • Heat 5-6 cups of water in a large pot over high heat.
  • When it comes to a boil, add chopped methi leaves and peas and cook for 2 minutes.
  • Drain the water and run the leaves under tap water in a colander to stop cooking. Drain and keep aside.

Cook The Other Ingredients

  • Heat 3 cups of water in the same pot over high heat.
  • When it comes to a boil, add onions, ginger, garlic, cashew nuts, tomatoes, and green chilies and boil for 5 minutes. Drain and keep aside.

Make The Masala Paste

  • Add the boiled onion-tomato mixture to a blender along with ¼ cup water.
  • Blend to make a smooth paste.
  • Scrape the sides of the blender a few times while blending.

Make The Curry

  • Heat oil in a medium pan over medium-high heat.
  • Once the oil is hot, add whole green cardamoms and cinnamon stick and fry for 3-4 seconds. You can crush the cardamoms and cinnamon lightly for a more intense flavor.
  • Add the onion-tomato paste to the pan and cook for 3- 4 minutes, stirring frequently.
  • Now add salt, Kashmiri red chili powder, and garam masala powder, and cook for a minute.
  • Add 1 cup water and cook for 2-3 minutes.
  • Add the cooked methi and peas to the pan and cook for 2-3 minutes.
  • Now add heavy cream and sugar and cook for a minute.
  • Add lime juice and mix well. Check for salt and add more if required.
  • Garnish with heavy cream swirls. Serve hot with naan or laccha paratha.

Notes

Reduce the amount of cream and replace it with milk for a healthier version.
If the methi is very bitter, soak it in some salted water for 10 mins. Then squeeze and use. Blanching also removes the bitterness to quite an extent.
To make the recipe vegan, replace heavy cream with cashew or coconut cream.
Increase the amount of green chili if you want it spicier.

Nutrition

Calories: 332kcal, Carbohydrates: 24g, Protein: 10g, Fat: 23g, Saturated Fat: 2g, Polyunsaturated Fat: 5g, Monounsaturated Fat: 13g, Trans Fat: 0.1g, Sodium: 655mg, Potassium: 329mg, Fiber: 5g, Sugar: 7g, Vitamin A: 464IU, Vitamin C: 22mg, Calcium: 503mg, Iron: 4mg
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4.91 from 11 votes (9 ratings without comment)

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8 Comments

  1. 5 stars
    I was looking for methi matar mala recipe for a long time. Today I have seen the video and I loved it. Looks very tasty. I am going to make it. Thank you for sharing

  2. 5 stars
    This was delicious! THANK YOU! Made the vegan version, using homemade coconut heavy cream—tasted just like what we order from our local Indian restaurant. Served with saffron rice. Yum! Thank you, thank you! Will definitely be making again (and probably doubling the recipe)!

  3. Hi … tried this recipe for dinner … my family loved it … will be coming back for more recipes … keep up the good work 🙂