June 11, 2009

Methi Muthias (A Steamed Fenugreek Leaves and Chickpea Flour Snack)

Don't ask me why, but I find coming up with a snack for evening tea/ coffee the most challenging. That's the time when everyone is really hungry and whatever the accompaniment it has to go with coffee (for my husband), tea (for me) or milk (for our daughter)! It's also the time when I least want to be in the kitchen!!
As if this weren't enough, I would prefer the snack to be healthy/ nutritious and light (or appetite for dinner gets destroyed) while the most important criteria for everyone else is taste, naturally.

This combination is sometimes a bit difficult to achieve, in my opinion. Have you ever noticed how the tastiest food is invariably not very good for you?
So here is one of those snacks which fulfils all the three above-mentioned criteria and actually passed the "taste" test here at home.
Try this; it doesn't take all that time and effort to make. And who knows? You just might like it too.

Muthias are small spiced dumplings made from chickpea flour, wheat flour (and sometimes even millet flour) and mostly fenugreek leaves though sometimes other shredded vegetables like doodhi/ bottle gourd or even cabbage or carrots are used. These dumplings are either steamed or fried.
They can be served as an appetizer, snacks or side dishes to the main meal. Sometimes, they are also used as in ingredient in preparing other dishes.

Muthias are typically Gujarathi food, though I understand that they're eaten in certain parts of Rajasthan too. Like I mentioned before, these can be fried instead of being steam cooked, and I don't have to tell you that they would taste even better then.
Here's the recipe I used adapted from Vasantha Moorthy's The Complete Vegetable Cookbook.


1 1/2 cups loosely packed chopped fenugreek leaves

1 cup chickpea flour (besan)

1 1/2 tbsp whole wheat flour

1 1/2 tsp cumin powder

1/4 tsp turmeric powder

1/2 tsp baking soda

1/2 tsp sugar

1 1/2 tsp yogurt

1 1/2 tsp finely minced ginger

1/2 tsp garlic paste

1 to 2 finley chopped green chillies

salt to taste

For tempering:

1 tbsp oil

1 tsp mustard seeds

a big pinch of asafetida

1 sprig curry leaves, chopped

For garnishing:

1 tbsp fresh grated coconut

1 tbsp chopped coriander leaves


Mix all the ingredients (except those for tempering and garnishing) together with a little water to make a smooth dough that is neither stiff nor very soft. The dough should be more on the softer side as this makes softer muthias.

Divide the dough into 4 equal portions. Roll out each portion, using well-oiled hands, into sausage like strands about 3/4" in diameter.

Place the rolled out dough on a greased plate and steam cook till done. A thin knife, when inserted, should come out clean when the dough rolls are done.
Allow to cool slightly and then cut the rolls into 1/2" pieces. These are the "muthiyas". Arrange them on a serving dish.

For the tempering:

Heat the oil in a small pan. Add the mustard seeds and when they splutter, add the curry leaves and asafetida. Mix once and take of the heat immediately.

Pour onto the "muthiyas" and garnish with coriander leaves and coconut. Serve slightly warm, with green chutney or ketchup.
You may also serve this as a side dish with lunch. This should serve 3 to 4.

These muthiyas are my submission for Susan's MLLA whose 12th helping is being hosted by Apu of Annarasa.


Happy cook said...

I only started knowing aobut this pic after i started blogging, so i have never had this.
Beautiful picture.
Here for coffee time it is some biscuits etc..... then snack time is friday evening whey Shyama and hubby comes home after 9:30 pm.
or in the weekend that too in the evening. I never make snacks for late afternoon.

Manggy said...

Ahaha! I've no doubt they'd probably be even better fried, but I dunno if they're still healthy :)

Pooja said...

Oh looks so delicious! Unfortunately never had the oppurtunity to try it! But am sure it serves as a perfect tea time snack. Though frying always increases the taste I still go for the healthy steamed/baked version that provides a guilt free indulgence!

sra said...

ah, this was one of the first guj recipes i read about. never tasted it, though. i love their khandvi. these are also used in their various gravies and khichdis, I think.

Superchef said...

mm..looks delicious. Yeah, thinking about a healthy snack for teatime is the most daunting of all! I can always only think of various kinds of pakoras and have to really stop myself from making them! :(

Pavithra said...

Looks so delish... healthy snack... great post , please send me them

Curry Leaf said...

Baked first and them steamed this time.Baked ones looked perfect and this one looks very wholesome Aparna.Perfect teatime snack.
(I would give anything to get out of the kitchen during tea time,but cannot.)

Vani said...

I love muthias too. Tasty, guilt free snacks. Looks soft and yum, Aparna!

Lisa said...

I'm always looking for new ideas for chickpea flour and fenugreek is one of my favorites. I must try this! Goodness, I'd eat these for dinner :)

TBC said...

That is a fantastic healthy snack. Is this similar to surali wadi (the Maharashtrian dish)? I always seem to mix up the two!

Jyoti said...

These look so good ! I have never made these before...will try out soon.

Bharti said...

Never had these steamed before. They do look like the perfect tea time snack.

Prathibha said...

Had this at friends place..But never tried them...Looks yummy n perfect..

Sharmila said...

I do make muthiyas but avoid the frying .. just add it directly to the dish. Never tried them as snacks though. Thanks for the idea Aparna! :-)

Parita said...

I love methi muthias, we make them often, the click looks inviting!!

Raaga said...

lovely... looks like something we could take on a trip too :-)

Nags said...

these look so much like kandvi!

Divya Kudua said...

It seems our body is most hungry at 4.30 in the morning as well as evening..I swear I didn't create that,someone told me!!So its best that we stock up on healthy snacks to feed our precious body..:).

Muthias are something new to me,never heard of them.My guj food expertise begins and ends at dhoklas and I didn't take much fancy to it.So there ends my Guj saga..:)

Chitra said...

I have never heard abt this..It looks like dhokla..sounds interesting!!

Kalyn said...

Sounds delicious! I'm growing some fenugreek leaves in my garden so I'm on the lookout for ideas to use them.

Srivalli said...

how lovely aparna..I always wanted to make this...

pigpigscorner said...

These are packed full of flavours!

farida said...

Sounds delicious and looks colorful. Great recipe!

karuna said...

My mom in law use to make these when she was here with us. Nice recipe and healthy too.

jayasri said...

bookmarked it!, looks very delicious.., as i love fenugreek leaves, this dish really has caught my attention! will definitely try this

Bergamot said...

These look simply great. If I show this to my husband, he would want me me try it. My mum-in-law used to make this with a variation (Konkan) and sadly no one knows how it was done. I think your recipe will help me recreate it :-)

Aparna said...

HC, I had a gujarathi friend in University and her mom wasa great cook, so that's where I had my first muthiyas.
So you snack late at night? Interesting. Biscuits with tea would be easy for me. :0

Mark, they're definitely better fried. :)

I like khandvi, too Sra. Yes, muthias are used in some gravy dishes.

Pavithra, be delighted to. :)

I know, Sweatha and I sympathise wholeheartedly.

I'll wait to hear what you think of them, Lisa.

Supriya, I'm hearing of Surali wadi for the first time, had to look it up! :)
No, that's the same as khandvi. Equally tasty but this is different.

Yes, one could Raaga. On a short trip, though. :)

Don't know about 4.30am but 4.30pm is when I'm most hungry (read snacking!).
You should embark on a discovery of Gujrathi food, it's worth it.

You just got a good one, Kalyn.

Do, Valli.

Love to hear how it turns out, Jayasri.

I didn't know there was a Konkan version of this. I should check it out. Let me know when you re-create your version.

A2Z Vegetarian Cuisine said...

Muthiya looks very delicious..

Usha said...

This is one of my faves and I even add some of my leftover khichdi/ rice to the flour along with methi or spinach, makes it more filling and tastes quite delicious ! This one looks perfect, loved the pictures:-)

shayma said...

adore these. my friend's mother in Nairobi (Gujarati, Jain) used to make these for us. Brought back memories of childhood in Kenya. lovely blog.

Aparna said...

Thank you, Shayma. I used to live in Kenya too (Mombasa).

shayma said...

Thanks so much for visiting my site, Aparna. As someone new to the blogging world (just made my blog "live" a week and a half ago) I am most grateful to those who visit. We lived in Nairobi, I did my secondary schooling there. Miss it lots. A dear friend of mine is Parsi and has taught me their special egg dish, too. Enjoy your beautiful blog very much, shall be visiting very often.

shayma said...

and have added it to my blogroll. x