A while ago, I had made Methi Malai Matar (fenugreek leaves and peas with cream) using soy creamer and having loved it, I had bought frozen methi leaves with the idea of making it again. When I saw the Vegan Mofo Iron Chef challenge to make something with chickpeas, I wanted to give it a shot. I also wanted to cook with Methi leaves this weekend, so I decided to make a ‘Methi Malai Chole’ instead. Not terribly original, I know! But I love chickpeas and doing something for the Iron chef challenge sounded like fun!
Having run out of soy creamer, I used cashew cream instead of malai. I had soaked cashews in the fridge overnight and the resultant cream is so potent, just a little goes a long way! I had also soaked the chickpeas for about 16 hours, so thanks vegan mofo for the chance to do a bit of stress free cooking on a Sunday morning. My husband is warding off a jet lag by sleeping, so its a quiet morning!
- Methi/Fenugreek Leaves, tightly packed – 1 cup
- Chickpeas – soaked and cooked/ canned – 1.5 cups
- Cashew Cream – ¼ cup [soak cashews overnight and blend until really smooth with enough water to achieve the consistency of heavy cream]
- Tomatoes, chopped – 2
- Onion, chopped – ½ cup
- Ginger – garlic paste – 1.5 tbsp
- Red chilis, finely minced – 3
- Garam Masala powder – 1 tsp
- Paprika/ Cayenne – 2 tsp
- Oil – 2 tsp
- Salt – to taste
- Juice from half a lemon (optional)
- Something to garnish – cilantro or spring onions
- Heat oil in a wok/pot/saucepan
- When the oil is hot, add chopped onions, ginger-garlic paste and red chilis; stir occassionally under the onions change color
- Add tomatoes and cook the mixture for 5-7 minutes, until tomatoes are cooked
- Add the methi leaves and a bit of water to prevent sticking.
- In about 4-5 minutes, when the methi leaves have somewhat cooked, add the cooked chickpeas
- Add salt, cayenne, garam masala and chickpeas and cook for another 5-7 minutes.
- Add cashew cream and bring the heat down to a gentle simmer, for about 4 minutes.
- Mix lemon juice and garnish with chopped spring onions.
Enjoy with carbohydrates of choice – rice, bread, rotis, quinoa, anything! According to the Methi leaves packet, 4.5 ounces of methi contains 39% of daily value of Calcium. Pretty neat!