Bhaji Dana (Parsi-Style Fenugreek Leaves with Peas)
Bitter greens are an elegant foil to the sweetness of onions and green peas.
Fenugreek is a plant traditionally used in South Asian cooking for its leaves and seeds. It imparts a potent fragrance and has a distinct bitter taste. Widely available in Asian markets—especially Indian ones—the leaves may be sold fresh, frozen, or dried, while fenugreek seeds are packaged as a spice. While there’s no substitute for fresh fenugreek leaves in this Parsi-style preparation, the recipe is otherwise highly versatile. Eat it on its own, with a cooked egg on top, or as a side dish with chicken or lamb.
Featured in “India's Beautifully Bitter Foods.”
- 1 tbsp. vegetable oil or ghee, divided
- 1 small red onion, thinly sliced lengthwise (½ cup)
- 1 green bird’s eye chile, thinly sliced into thin rings
- 2 tsp. ginger-garlic paste
- 3 cups fresh fenugreek leaves, stems removed
- 1 tsp. ground coriander
- 1 tsp. ground cumin
- 1 tsp. Indian chile powder
- 1⁄2 tsp. freshly grated nutmeg
- 1⁄2 cup fresh or frozen peas
- Kosher salt
- 1⁄2 cup coarsely chopped cilantro
- Fresh roti*, to serve
*Buy fresh roti from your local South Asian market, or make your own; get the recipe here.