Tell me not in mournful numbers,
Life is but an empty dream.
Life is real! Life is earnest!
And the grave is not its goal.

When I go from hence
let this be my parting word,
that what I have seen is unsurpassable.

Sunday, 15 June 2008

My experiments with food: Methi Chicken

I was feeling pretty bored from watching TV all afternoon. So I decided to cook something different. I could not think of anything simple and yet different from regular dishes. Called up my ever dependable mom and asked for recipe which "would be different from what I regularly make but simple enough so that I can finish it in time for an early dinner". She suggested methi chicken. It seemed simple enough to make. It required lots of garlic and methi, both of which I like very much. I thought they would give the dish a pungent aroma - a happy change from the bland burger from McDonald's I had for lunch. And, its very light on the stomach. I decided to go for it. It took me one trip to the local super market and less than an hour of cooking time to make it. Needless to say, it was a huge success. It tasted as good as I hoped it would and better. I have written down the recipe below.

Recipe: Methi Chicken

Ingredients (serves 1):
  1. Chicken - 250 gms. (medium to small pieces)
  2. Red tomatoes - 250 gms. (same quantity as chicken)
  3. Kasoori Methi (dried Fenugreek leaves) - 50 gms. (depending on how strong you want the aroma to be)
  4. Onions - 100 gms.
  5. Garlic - 10 cloves (I used more than that - told you I like garlic)
  6. Red chili powder (for colour only)
  7. Green chilies (depending on how hot you want your food)
  8. Ginger to taste.
  1. Soak the methi leaves in water for about half an hour.
  2. Cut the tomatoes, the green chilies and the onions into very small pieces.
  3. Heat oil.
  4. Put in the tomato, onion, ginger and chili and a pinch of red chili powder.
  5. Stir till the the mixture becomes soft and light brown.
  6. Put in the chicken pieces.
  7. Add just enough water so that all the pieces are completely submerged.
  8. Add haldi and salt to taste.
  9. Cover it and cook till the chicken pieces become soft. Stir it from time to time so that all pieces cook uniformly.
  10. Add the methi leaves and the water they were soaked in.
  11. Cover it and let it cook till you get a thick gravy. You must stir it from time to time so that the leaves blend uniformly.
About Methi
I looked up methi on the internet and found quite a few interesting facts about it. Its called Fenugreek in English. Its scientific name is Trigonella foenum-graecum. The leaves are used as herbs and the seeds as spice. It was first cultivated in the region near modern day Iraq in around 4000 BC.
In India, methi seeds are mixed with yogurt and used as a conditioner for hair. In Ethiopia, it is used as natural herbal medicine in the treatment of diabetes. In Egypt, methi seeds are prepared as tea, by being boiled then sweetened. Methi has a lot of medicinal properties. It mainly used as a digestive aid. It has been shown to reduce cholestrol and is a potent antidiabetic. It also helps in reducing heat in human body. The Wikipedia entry on Methi is here.

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