Saturday, March 23, 2013

Methi chicken..chicken with fresh fenugreek leaves

Whenever I need to make a quick dish, most of the time I find myself choosing to make something with chicken. Preparing a chicken dish for me is not only a quick and easy option, and a chicken dish has the added advantage of being paired with both bread and rice. Today the chicken dish I cooked is very common to Indian households, especially during winter, when fresh methi saak or fenugreek leaves are available. Yes, you are right it is Methi chicken, chicken curry flavored with fresh fenugreek leaves.

Methi or fenugreek has an earthy aroma that blends very well with chicken. I have made  Kasuri methi murg i.e. chicken with dried fenugreek leaves before. But using fresh fenugreek leaves brought out a whole different flavor and aroma to the dish. Since fenugreek has a bitter taste, I was initially a bit hesitant to use the fresh leaves while making the chicken curry. But my culinary expert friends Pinki and Smriti confirmed that there will be no bitterness if only leaves are used. And a go ahead from them is all I needed to firm up my mind. Thanks to both of them it was delicious.

Keep two things in mind while using fresh fenugreek leaves/methi saak, use the freshest possible and use only the leaves. Adding the stems will turn the dish bitter.

Things needed to make Methi Chicken:

(adapted from

  • Chicken with bone: 700 gm
  • Fresh methi (fenugreek) leaves: a bunch
  • Fenugreek seeds: 1 tsp
  • Dry red chili: 4-5
  • Onion (thinly sliced): 1.5 cup
  • Garlic paste: 1 tbsp
  • Ginger paste: 1 tbsp
  • Tomato: 1 small
  • Yogurt: 3/4 cup
  • Cumin powder: 1 tsp
  • Coriander powder: 1 tsp
  • Turmeric powder: 1/2 tsp
  • Kashmiri red chili powder: 1/2 tsp
  • Green chilies (chopped): 3-4 (optional)
  • Garam masala powder: 1 tsp
  • Salt to taste
  • Sugar to taste
  • Oil to cook

Steps of making Methi Chicken:

1. Separate the fenugreek leaves from the stems. Do not add the stems, it will make the dish bitter. Wash the leaves well and keep it on a colander to drain out the water.

2. Wash and clean the chicken, keep aside. In a large heavy bottom pan, add oil. When the oil is hot add the fenugreek seeds(methi dana), cook till the seeds start to change the color. Reduce heat and carefully take out the seeds and discard. You can keep the seeds, but if you bite one of them while eating that will be quite a bitter experience, and I mean it literally. So better discard the seeds after infusing the flavor into the oil.

3. Add dry red chilies in the oil, cook for few seconds, add sliced onions, cook till nicely brown. Add garlic paste and ginger paste, mix well and cook for 2-3 min over medium heat. Add chopped tomato. Sprinkle salt and cook till tomatoes are done.

4. Add turmeric powder, cumin powder, coriander powder, kashmiri red chili powder, mix well. Cover and cook for 3-4 min.

5. Add yogurt, beat the yogurt with little water and sugar before adding. Cook over low heat for 5 min, add chicken, salt and fenugreek leaves. Add chopped green chilies, if using. Cover and cook over low-medium heat till the chicken is done. Keep stirring in between. The chicken will release enough water to cook, but if needed add hot water. This dish will have a thick gravy, so do not add much water. Check seasoning and adjust accordingly. Sprinkle garam masala powder, let rest for 10 min, serve hot with pulao or roti.

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1 comment:

  1. Been looking for this recipe :) would love to try and make this today!! yum yum so delicious <3 <3