This winter when I was visiting my family in Delhi, I had the distinct pleasure of eating Methi Aloo (Potatoes with Fenugreek) after many years. I am a foodie, no doubt about that. But there are certain dishes that I am crazy about. And believe it or not, Methi Aloo is one of them.
I love Methi. It is nutritious too, so my Mom had no issues making it again and again. I can actually eat all preparations of Methi. It is something about the smell that I love. May be it has to do something with the memory that is still clearly imprinted in my mind, of my father and my sister walking by Methi fields in Maler Kotla, Punjab. My Nani used to live there and we used to visit her during our summer vacations.
After coming back to the US I was curious to know if I could make Methi here as well. I asked about the recipe from different sources, confirmed it online and then went to the Indian store to buy Methi. I bought a bunch and it looked like a lot for two people. Some of you are probably familiar with the experiences of buying obnoxiously large sized eggplants and bottle guards and using the same onion in two dishes, simply because it is so big. And so you keep fishing for the smaller veggies to fit a family of two. Well so I bought just one bunch of fresh and green Methi.
I was so excited that I immediately got down to the task of cleaning the leaves and plucking them from the stem. It did feel like a lot of work. Even then I had no doubt that all this hard work would pay off eventually. I stuck to the job and kept myself busy dreaming about what all I could make with this one bunch of Methi – Methi ki roti, Methi Aloo and that Malai Methi Matar dish that I saw several moons ago. My imagination helped me move along. And finally the bunch was cleaned and plucked and I had a big bowl of Methi leaves sitting right in front of me.
Next I called my Mom for final instructions for the recipe. All was set and I put the Methi in the food processor to chop. It turned out quite fine. I did notice that the quantity seemed to have shrunk. But I was still sure that it was enough Methi for some rotis and a dish. Since I was not going to put any potatoes, I told myself that while the overall quantity might not be large, it would still be sufficient for the two of us. I was now planning on kneading the dough for the rotis, right after I put the methi to cook.
Then the oil was heated up, and some hari mirchis were added. Oh I could already smell the Methi. I started putting in the fresh green leaves and was struck with a fear — what if it ran short? So an instant change in plan was put in place. Rotis were to be dropped. We were now only focusing on the methi dish. And so I emptied my jar of chopped methi in the vessel. Then I closed the lid and went on to read my book.
It was now that I met reality. The harsh reality that I was so not prepared for. The reality that made me skip a breath. And I am not exaggerating when I say that a teardrop managed to reach the brink of my eyes. Oh well the truth was out there. I just had to reconcile with it and absorb the shame. The dish turned out ok. But this was all that was made..
So next time when you plan to make Methi, please buy appropriate quantities.
Thank You. Now you can go home and laugh at me.
With love and regards,
A disappointed Methi Lover