Methi Matar Malai Recipe (Creamy Fenugreek Green Peas Curry)

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Methi Matar Malai (also spelled Methi Mutter Malai) is a sumptuous North Indian curry made with fenugreek leaves, green peas and cream. Smooth, creamy, and rich, this recipe is a surefire winner with kids and adults alike. Try making this tasty curry recipe today – you’re sure to love it.

methi matar malai in a white bowl with a light blue rim, garnished with a few peas and a sprig of fresh coriander.

About Methi Matar Malai

If you need a cooking win, this recipe is for you. Methi (fenugreek leaves), matar (green peas) and malai (cream) are a killer combination. This recipe is so good, it will even beat the matar methi malai served in restaurants!

This recipe for methi mutter malai can be made in flat 30 to 35 minutes. Thus making it a perfect comfort food dinner on a chaotic weeknight.

This mild recipe is good for kids too – especially if you want to feed them fenugreek. There is no bitterness at all! In fact, this yummy curry is on the sweeter side due to the cream, onions and cashews.

Both fenugreek leaves and its seeds have a lot of health benefits. So be sure to include them in your meals.

Looking for more popular Methi Recipes on blog? Check out some of my favorites:

  1. Methi Paneer
  2. Methi Malai Paneer
  3. Methi Chaman

This recipe inspired from Asha Khatau’s cookbook Epicure’s Vegetarian Cuisines of India has always been a hit at home! Every single time I make it, I am amazed at how good it tastes.

I also love that it is an easily scalable recipe – if you’re cooking for a crowd, feel free to double or triple it! As written, this methi matar malai recipe will make about 4 servings with roti.

As with most Indian curries, methi mutter malai goes well with Indian flatbreads like Naan, Paratha, Chapati or Tandoori Roti. It also goes well with plain boiled basmati rice or Jeera Rice.

Make this simple, comforting fenugreek and green pea curry tonight – you’ll be so glad that you did!

Step-by-Step Guide

How to make Methi Matar Malai

Make Onion Cashew Paste

1. In a grinder or blender jar, add 1 teaspoon of cumin seeds.

cumin seeds in a grinder jar.

2. Add ⅓ cup chopped onions.

chopped onions added to grinder jar.

3. Add ¼ cup cashews.

raw cashews added to grinder jar.

4. Next add 1 teaspoon chopped garlic cloves, 1 teaspoon ginger and 1 teaspoon green chilies.

garlic, ginger and green chilies added to grinder jar.

5. Grind to a smooth and fine paste. If the blades are having difficulty turning, then you can add a tablespoon or two of water while grinding.

tablespoon full of paste for making methi matar malai recipe to show the consistency. It looks like a slightly gritty cake batter.

Sauté Onion Paste

6. Heat 2 tablespoons of ghee or a neutral flavored oil in a pan or kadai until shimmer. Add the paste to the heated pan.

paste added to hot oil in kadai.

7. Sauté the paste, stirring often.

sautéing the paste to make methi matar malai recipe.

8. Sauté till you see the oil releasing and the paste leaves the sides of the pan. You don’t have to brown the paste.

Stir often to ensure that the paste does not stick to the pan. If it does stick, then add some water.

To see the sautéing process in action, check out the video above.

paste is ready now that it has gathered around itself and the oil is releasing from the sides.

Sauté Methi (Fenugreek Leaves)

9. Add 1 cup chopped fenugreek leaves (methi).

Prep the leaves ahead before you begin the cooking by first rinsing them thoroughly in water 3 to 4 times. Draining all the water, then chop the leaves and set aside.

methi leaves added to pan with paste.

10: Mix well and sauté for 2 to 3 minutes on low heat.

sautéing fenugreek leaves with paste for making methi matar malai recipe.

Add Water or Green Peas Stock

11. Next, add ½ cup water or the green peas stock (the water in which the green peas were cooked) in two parts. You can add either of these liquids as required.

adding matar stock to pan with methi mixture.

12. Mix very well.

stirring methi matar mixture.

13. Simmer the gravy for 3 to 4 mins.

simmering the gravy

Make Methi Matar Malai

14: Next, add ½ cup boiled matar (green peas).

Though fresh green peas taste best, you can use frozen peas too. To cook green peas, just add them in enough water and boil till the peas are done. Do not throw away the water. Use the green peas stock instead of water for even more flavor!

matar (green peas) added to curry.

15. Now add ½ cup light cream or low-fat cream. If using homemade malai, then mix chilled malai with a whisk or in a small blendertill smooth.

TIP: For heavy or whipping cream, add only ¼ cup.

malai added to mixture.

16. Mix very well.

mixing in the cream and peas into the methi matar malai recipe.

17. Simmer methi mutter malai curry for 5 to 6 minutes, stirring at intervals. If the consistency looks too thick for your liking, add a bit of water to thin the consistency slightly.

simmering methi matar malai in a kadai.

18. Lastly, add ½ teaspoon each of sugar and salt. Mix again and simmer for a minute. Add more or less sugar to taste, or skip it altogether.

At this step, optionally you can sprinkle 2 to 3 pinches of Garam Masala Powder.

adding salt and sugar.

19. Methi matar malai is now ready to serve. How easy was that?

hand holding a spoon of mixture - methi matar malai recipe is complete!

20: Garnish with coriander leaves (cilantro) and serve Methi Matar Malai with Indian flatbreads like naan, paratha, or chapati. It also goes well with plain steamed basmati rice or saffron rice or jeera rice.

methi matar malai in a white bowl with a light blue rim, garnished with a few peas and a sprig of fresh coriander.

FAQs

Can I make this recipe vegan?

Yes, you can! Feel free to use coconut cream instead of malai, or make it using almond paste or almond meal instead. Note that with coconut cream, the taste and flavor will be of coconut.

Can I use almonds instead of cashews?

Yep! In basically any Indian recipe, you can replace cashews with almonds. Be sure to blanch them first and remove their skins for the best results.

What if I am allergic to nuts?

Try swapping in 1 to 2 tablespoons of melon seeds (magaz) or 2 teaspoons of poppy seeds (khus khus) for the cashews!

Can I use dried fenugreek leaves a.k.a kasuri methi?

Indeed you can. Simply use 1.5 to 2 tablespoons of dried fenugreek leaves in place of the fresh leaves.

Can I make a jain version?

Just skip onion and garlic and make a paste of green chilies, ginger, cashews and cumin seeds. Heat the oil and add a pinch of asafoetida before adding the spice paste. From there, the rest of the recipe remains the same!

How do I make methi leaves less bitter?

Sprinkle some salt on the chopped fenugreek leaves and let them sit for 15 to 20 minutes, then squeeze them before using.

Can you add paneer to this curry?

Absolutely!

I’m out of cream, can I use khoya instead?

Yes, though the flavour will be slightly different. Use ½ cup grated khoya in place of the cream.

What about curd?

I don’t suggest you use curd in this recipe, as it will give the curry a sour taste. Use cream, or substitute ½ cup mawa or khoya instead.

More Indian Curries To Try!

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methi matar malai in a white bowl with a light blue rim, garnished with a few peas and a sprig of fresh coriander.

Methi Matar Malai Recipe

Methi Matar Malai is a rich and delicious North Indian curry made with fenugreek leaves, green peas and cream. Smooth and creamy this recipe is a surefire winner with kids and adults alike.
4.88 from 70 votes
Prep Time 10 mins
Cook Time 20 mins
Total Time 30 mins
Cuisine North Indian
Course Main Course
Diet Gluten Free, Vegetarian
Difficulty Level Moderate
Servings 4
Units

Ingredients

For the paste

  • cup chopped onions or 1 medium-sized onion
  • ¼ cup cashews – whole cashews
  • 1 teaspoon cumin seeds
  • 1 teaspoon chopped garlic or 4 to 5 medium-sized garlic cloves
  • 1 teaspoon chopped ginger or 1 inch ginger
  • 1 teaspoon chopped green chilies or serrano peppers or 1 to 2 green chilies

Other ingredients

  • 2 tablespoons oil or ghee
  • 1 cup chopped fenugreek leaves (methi leaves)
  • ½ cup water or the stock/water of boiled green peas – add as required
  • ½ cup green peas – boiled or steamed
  • ½ cup light cream or low-fat cream, check notes below for whipping or heavy cream
  • ½ teaspoon sugar or add as required
  • salt as required

For garnish

  • 1 to 2 tablespoons chopped coriander leaves (cilantro)
  • 1 to 2 tablespoons green peas boiled or steamed – optional

Instructions
 

Preparing the ground paste

  • In a grinder jar or blender, add cumin seeds, chopped onions, cashews, garlic, ginger and green chilies.
  • Blend or grind to a smooth paste withput adding any water.
  • If you are not able to blend, then you can add 1 to 2 tablespoons of water.
  • For cooking the green peas, you can either boil them in a pan with 1.5 cups water for 7 to 8 minutes until tender or steam them in an Instant pot for 3 to 5 minutes adding about 1 to 1.25 cups water in the steel insert.
  • You can also boil the green peas in a stove-top pressure cooker for 5 to 6 minutes. Reserve ½ cup of the cooked water if you have boiled the peas.

Sautéing ground paste

  • Heat ghee (clarified butter) or oil in a pan or kadai.
  • When the ghee melts or becomes lightly hot, add the ground paste.
  • Sauté the paste for 6 to 7 minutes on a low heat until you see the fat separating from the sides.
  • Stir often when sautéing so that the paste does not stick to the pan. You should see fat releasing from the sides and the paste will also have a nice aroma.
  • You will see the paste coming together and becoming glossy. Do not brown the paste. 
  • If the ground paste sticks to the pan or gets browned add a few splashes of water. Mix, deglaze and continue to sauté.

Making methi matar malai

  • Add in the chopped fenugreek leaves and sauté further for 2 to 3 minutes. 
  • Then add ½ cup water or the stock/water in which the green peas were cooked in two parts. Mix thoroughly and simmer the gravy for 3 to 4 minutes. Stir at intervals. 
  • Add the boiled peas and cream.
  • Simmer the gravy for 5 to 6 minutes on a low heat.
  • Finally add the sugar and salt. Mix again. At this step, you can opt to sprinkle 2 to 3 pinches of garam masala powder.
  • Garnish with coriander leaves and serve methi matar malai hot or warm with naan, paratha or roti.

Video

Notes

  • If using fresh homemade cream or malai: Refrigerate about ¼ cup of clotted cream or malai first.Then whip it till it becomes smooth and soft. Don’t add warm malai or clotted cream straightaway from the milk as this won’t give you a good creamy texture. I used packaged light cream but you can get the same results with fresh malai. You don’t need to whip or beat the cream if you are using packaged cream.
  • If the fenugreek leaves are too bitter: Chop the fenugreek leaves and take them in a bowl. Sprinkle some salt and mix very well. Keep aside for 15 minutes. Then squeeze the fenugreek leaves in your palms. The bitter juices go away this way. 
  • If adding whipping cream or heavy cream: When you include whipping cream or heavy cream in the recipe, then add ¼ cup of either.
  • Green Peas: You can add either fresh green peas or frozen green peas. Make sure to boil or steam the green peas before you add to the curry.

Nutrition Info (Approximate values)

Nutrition Facts
Methi Matar Malai Recipe
Amount Per Serving (4 g)
Calories 203 Calories from Fat 135
% Daily Value*
Fat 15g23%
Saturated Fat 8g50%
Polyunsaturated Fat 1g
Monounsaturated Fat 2g
Cholesterol 33mg11%
Sodium 309mg13%
Potassium 150mg4%
Carbohydrates 12g4%
Fiber 2g8%
Sugar 3g3%
Protein 6g12%
Vitamin A 323IU6%
Vitamin B1 (Thiamine) 1mg67%
Vitamin B2 (Riboflavin) 1mg59%
Vitamin B3 (Niacin) 1mg5%
Vitamin B6 1mg50%
Vitamin B12 1µg17%
Vitamin C 10mg12%
Vitamin D 1µg7%
Vitamin E 1mg7%
Vitamin K 9µg9%
Calcium 258mg26%
Vitamin B9 (Folate) 19µg5%
Iron 2mg11%
Magnesium 35mg9%
Phosphorus 84mg8%
Zinc 1mg7%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.

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This methi matar malai recipe from the blog archives first published in February 2012 has been republished and updated on 19 January 2022.

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Meet Dassana

Welcome to Dassana's Veg Recipes. I share vegetarian recipes from India & around the World. Having been cooking for decades and with a professional background in cooking & baking, I help you to make your cooking journey easier with my tried and tested recipes showcased with step by step photos & plenty of tips & suggestions.

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242 Comments

  1. Hi! Dassana…have forgotten the no. of times I have made this dish since I sighted it..and believe me every time it’s been a hit in the family..thank you soooo much 💞5 stars

    1. Thanks a lot for the feedback and glad to read it. Most welcome. Thanks for the rating as well.

  2. I tried this recipe last night and my husband relished it. He usually doesn’t take much of veg to eat with rotis but last night he finished the entire dish. Thank you for this recipe.5 stars