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All About Fenugreek & Fenugreek Seeds | Know Your Spice Methi (Trigonella foenum-graecum)

All About Fenugreek | Know Your Spice Methi (Trigonella foenum-graecum)

Know more about Fenugreek or Fenugreek seeds or Methi or Methi Dana (Trigonella foenum-graecum)

Fenugreek seeds | methi dana | trigonella foenum-graecum

Fenugreek is an annual plant in the family Fabaceae, with leaves consisting of three small ovate to oblong leaflets. It is cultivated worldwide.

Methi or fenugreek seeds and leaves form a common but important ingredient in Indian subcontinent households. It is used in almost every Indian preparation like dal, paratha or curry.

It is a also a rich reservoir of medicinal properties as well that imparts many health benefits.

What are the other names for fenugreek?

The names of fenugreek or methi in other languages are given below.

Indian Languages Other Languages
Hindi: Methi (मेथी), Kasoori Methi (कसूरी मेथी),
Methi Dana or Seeds (मेथी दाना)
Bengali: Methi (মেথি)
Gujarati:
Methi (મેથી)
Kannada: Mente (ಮೆಂತೆ), Mentya (ಮೆಂತ್ಯ)
Kashmiri:
Meth (میٹھ)
Malayalam
: Uluva (ഉലുവാ), Uluva Ila (ഉലുവ ഇല)
Marathi: Methi (मेथी)
Punjabi:
Methi (ਮੇਥੀ)
Sanskrit:
Methika (मेथिका)
Tamil:
Meti (மேதி), Vendayam (வெந்தயம்), Vetani (வேதனி), Vendaya kirai (வெந்தய கீரை)
Telugu:
Mentikura (మెంతికురా), Mentulu (మెంటులు)
Latin (Botanical): Trigonella foenum-graecum
Arabic: Hulba (هلبا), Hilbe (هيلبي)
Chinese:
Wuh louh ba (葫蘆巴)
Dutch:
Fenegriek
French: Fenugrec, Sénegré, Trigonelle
German: Bockshornklee, Griechisch Heu
Greek: Trigonella (τριγωνέλλα), Telis (τῆλις)
Italian: Fieno greco
Japanese: Koruha (コロハ), Fenu-guriku (フェヌグリーク)
Portuguese: Feno-grego, Alfarva, Alforba, Fenacho
Swedish
: Bockhornsklöver

What exactly is fenugreek?

Get to know more about Fenugreek or Methi (Trigonella foenum-graecum)

Fenugreek (Trigonella foenum-graecum) Methi is a clover-like herb that stands around 2–3 feet (60–90 cm) tall.

It has green leaves, small white flowers, and pods that contain small, golden-brown seeds.

For thousands of years, the herb has been used in traditional medicine to treat skin conditions and many other diseases. It is also a common household spice and thickening agent.

It is native to the Mediterranean region, southern Europe, and western Asia.

What is the nutritional value of Fenugreek or Fenugreek seeds?

Find out about the nutritional value of Fenugreek seeds or sookha Methi (Trigonella foenum-graecum)

In a 100 g amount, the seeds provide 1,350 kilojoules (323 kcal) of food energy and contain 9% water, 58% carbohydrates, 23% protein and 6% fat, with calcium at 40% of the Daily Value (DV, table).

The seeds (per 100 g) are a rich source of protein (46% DV), dietary fiber, B vitamins, and dietary minerals, particularly manganese (59% DV) and iron (262% DV) (table).

What is the chemical composition of Fenugreek & Fenugreek seeds?

Know and understand about chemical composition of Fenugreek seeds or Methi (Trigonella foenum-graecum)

Fenugreek contains a number of chemical constituents including steroidal sapogenins. Diosgenin component has been found in the oily embryo of fenugreek.

There are two furostanol glycosides, F-ring opened precursors of diosgenin that have been reported in fenugreek also as hederagin glycosides.

Alkaloids such as trigocoumarin, nicotinic acid, trimethyl coumarin and trigonelline are present in stem. The mucilage is a standing out constituent of the seeds.

There is about 28% mucilage; a volatile oil; 2 alkaloids such as trigonelline and Choline, 5% of a stronger-smelling, bitter fixed oil, 22% proteins & a yellow coloring substance are present in stem.

What is the history of Fenugreek & Fenugreek seeds?

Know more about the origins & the story behind Fenugreek seeds or Methi (Trigonella foenum-graecum)

It has a long history as both a culinary and medicinal herb in the ancient world.

The medicinal value of the seeds is mentioned in Ayurvedic texts as well as in Greek and Latin pharmacopoeia.

The Ayurvedic texts praise this herb for its power as an aphrodisiac, but modern vaidyas seem to be using it more for digestive and respiratory problems.

As per the Egyptian history, it was used to embalm the dead of the ancient Egyptians. It was also used to ease childbirth and to increase milk flow.

Modern Egyptian women are still use it to relieve menstrual cramps & ease other kinds of abdominal pain.

The herb was used by the Jewish defenders of Jerusalem during the first Jewish-Roman war to repel the invaders from the city wall.

It was combined with boiling oil and then poured down upon the city walls, making them too slick for the Romans to climb.

The Greeks and Romans used it for cattle fodder (hence the Latin foenum graecum meaning Greek hay). It was grown extensively in the imperial gardens of  Charlemagne.

Charred seeds have been recovered from Tell Halal, Iraq (carbon dated to 4000 BC), and Bronze Age levels of Lachish and desiccated seeds from the tomb of Tutankhamen.

Cato the Elder lists it with clover and vetch as crops grown to feed cattle.

In one first-century A.D. recipe, the Romans flavoured wine with fenugreek.

In the 1st century AD, in Galilee, it was grown as a staple food, as Josephus mentions it in his book, the Wars of the Jews.

The plant is mentioned in the 2nd-century compendium of Jewish Oral Law (Mishnah) under its Hebrew name tiltan.

Historical uses for the herb were predominantly medicinal.

The seeds were thought to cure a gamut of disorders from fever, colic, flatulence, dysentery, coughs, tuberculosis, edema, rickets, ulcers, gout, diabetes and even baldness!

The seeds have been used to promote lactation and as an aphrodisiac.

The most amusing thing I found out when researching methi plant history has to do with harems.

Apparently, a more rubenesque figure was most desirable, so in order to feed those curves, many women gorged themselves on a mix of sugar, olive oil, and fenugreek.

This doesn’t sound half bad given that many people describe the its flavour as much like maple syrup.

What are the uses of Fenugreek seeds or Methi?

How are Fenugreek seeds or Methi (Trigonella foenum-graecum) used?

Fenugreek seeds or Methi dana or Methre is an important Indian spice that not only makes your food delicious but has numerous health benefits.

  • It is the famous herb & spices in human food that is also used as a vegetable.
  • It’s seeds and green leaves are used in food as well as in medicinal application that is the old practice of human history.
  • It has been used to increase the flavouring and color, and also modifies the texture of food materials.
  • It is used as food stabilizer, adhesive and emulsifying agent due to its high fiber, protein and gum content.
  • Modern Egyptian women are still use it to relieve menstrual cramps & ease other kinds of abdominal pain.
  • The Chinese call it hu lu ba, and also use it for treating abdominal pain.
  • In Egypt and Ethiopia, it is used in baking bread, and the Swiss use it for flavoring cheese.
  • In the USA, it is mainly used to make spice blends for soups and stews.
  • It remains a popular ingredient in curry powders, pickles and spice mixtures in India Pakistan, Bangladesh and other Asian countries.

What does Fenugreek taste like?

What is the taste of Fenugreek or Methi?

There is much dis­agree­ment about the flavour of fenugreek leaves and methi dana or seeds. There are two camps – those who like it and those who do not.

  • Uncooked fenugreek seeds – Uncooked Fenugreek seeds are strongly aromatic and flavourful. Seeds are bitter in taste but lose their bitterness, if roasted slightly.
  • Cooked fenugreek seeds – When the seeds are dry roasted, they offer a sweeter, nuttier flavour reminiscent of maple syrup and burnt sugar.
  • Fresh fenugreek leaves (methi) – taste slightly bitter.
  • Cooked fenugreek leaves (methi) – Cooked methi loses its bitterness. It also and easily takes on other strong flavours like lime and ground coriander seed.

How Much Fenugreek or Methi Should I Use?

What is the the recommended quantity of Fenugreek or Methi for a day?
  • For diabetes: 5-100 grams of powdered seeds added to one or two meals daily for 4 days to 3 years has been used. A dose of 1 gram daily of an extract of seeds has been used.
  • If you do not mind the bitter taste of fenugreek seeds, you can chew a teaspoon of methi seeds twice a day. But in my opinion it is difficult.
  • Soak one tablespoon of methi dana in two glasses of water and leave them overnight. Drink this decoction on an empty stomach as soon as you wake up, the next day.

What are the ayurvedic properties of Fenugreek or Methi?

Information about ayurvedic details of Fenugreek seeds or sookha Methi (Trigonella foenum-graecum).

Both seeds & leaves are used as an Ayurvedic medicine. It is used for several diseases of the digestive, respiratory, circulatory and reproductive system.

Rasa (Taste): Katu (Pungent), Tikta (Bitter)
Guna (Qualities): Laghu (Light to Digest), Snigdha (Unctuous, Oily)
Veerya (Potency): Ushna (Hot)
Vipaka (Taste conversion after digestion): Katu (Pungent)
Karma (Actions): It balances all the three Doshas

What can I use Fenugreek for?

Learn how to use Fenugreek or Methi (Trigonella foenum-graecum) in your food & beverages.

Apart from significant health benefits of Fenugreek, Methi lends its distinctive flavour to various Indian curries.

  • Indians also like the fresh leaves, which are eaten as a very tasty vegetable and prepared like spinach, or dried and used as a flavouring.
  • The powder of soluble fiber or total dietary fibre can be mixed with juices of fruit, seasonings and other spice mixes.
  • It is used in milk shakes, dressings, soups, candies and sweets.
  • It has been used to fortify bakery flour for pizza, pizza, cake mix, dosa batter, bread, bagel, muffins, flat bread, tortilla and noodles.
  • Fried, baked corn chips & bakery foods such as bread, pizza, cakes and muffins have been prepared by using flour fortified with eight to ten percent soluble dietary fibre.
  • Use methi in your kadhi pakora, butter chicken and achari gosht.
  • It is a common ingredient for making Indian pickles.
  • Use it to brew a digestive tea or make methi water.
  • The seeds are used whole or ground for spice blends like garam masala, panch phoran, or dry rubs for meat.

How do I prepare Fenugreek for food?

Learn how to prepare Fenugreek or Methi (Trigonella foenum-graecum) for your food & beverages.
  • Dried Fenugreek Seeds or Methi Dana – Simply, pan roast fenugreek seeds over medium heat to reduce their bitter taste.
  • Dried Fenugreek Leaves or Kasure Methi – Kasure or Kasoori Methi perhaps is the easiest way of using methi. Add it towards the end like a garnish like a flavouring in butter chicken. Add these to your marinades, then grill or broil.
  • Fresh Fenugreek – When blanched and flash-fried, their concentrated flavor helps finish sauces and quick dishes. For a simple dish like aloo methi, boil or fry potatoes, then add them to a pan with butter & methi leaves.

Can you eat all parts of Fenugreek?

What parts of Fenugreek or Methi (Trigonella foenum-graecum) plant are used for food & beverages.

Fenugreek or Methi is an entirely edible plant.

  • Fenugreek leaves and stems – are used widely in Asian and South American cuisines.
  • Fenugreek seeds – or the dried fruit of the plant are classically used whole, crushed, or ground as a common spice ingredient in Indian and Middle Eastern dishes.
  • Fenugreek Sprouts & Microgreens – are used for a salad.

How long does Fenugreek last?

Learn about how long does Fenugreek or Methi (Trigonella foenum-graecum) last in storage.
  • Whole fenugreek seeds – Whole fenugreek seeds will last in your pantry for up to 3 to 4 years.
  • Ground fenugreek seeds – Ground fenugreek seeds kept in a cool, dark place and will last up to 6 months. Fenugreek flavour dissipates once the seeds are ground.
  • Fresh fenugreek leaves – Stored in an airtight container in the fridge, so that it does not absorb any moisture the will last for three to four days. If wrapped in a newspaper, fresh methi will last for up to a week.

How do I store Fenugreek?

Learn about how to store Fenugreek or Methi (Trigonella foenum-graecum).
  • Whole fenugreek seeds – In an airtight container stored in your pantry or a refrigerator.
  • Ground fenugreek seeds – In an airtight container stored in a cool & dry, dark place. Do not store the powder for long because fenugreek seeds powder or Methi powder tends to lose its flavour & potency very fast.
  • Fresh fenugreek leaves or Methi – To store it well for up to a week, wash methi and simply dry it. Place it between two paper towels and store in a plastic or glass container that goes into your refrigerator.

Fresh fenugreek | methi | trigonella foenum-graecum

Is there a substitute for Fenugreek or Methi?

Learn how to use a substitute for Fenugreek or Methi (Trigonella foenum-graecum) if unavailable
  • Fresh fenugreek leaves or Methi – If you need a substitute for fenugreek leaves, you can use mustard greens. Celery leaves can also be used since they taste mildly bitter, much like fenugreek.
  • Fenugreek seeds – Substitute an equivalent amount of mustard seed in lieu of fenugreek seed.
  • Fenugreek seeds powder or ground Fenugreek – Substitute every teaspoon of Fenugreek seed called for with 3/4 teaspoon of ground Fenugreek.

Where do I buy Fenugreek or Methi from?

Where to Locate Fenugreek or Methi (Trigonella foenum-graecum) in a Grocery Store?

Whole dried Fenugreek seeds can be found packaged in the spice section of most grocery stores. Fresh Fenugreek is usually found in the vegetables aisles of a grocery store.

Buy fenugreek seeds or Methi dana on Amazon: India | USA

What are the health benefits of Fenugreek?

Learn more about health benefits of Fenugreek or Methi (Trigonella foenum-graecum)

Some of the health benefits of methi dana or fenugreek seeds (Trigonella foenum-graecum) are traditionally known for, including promoting digestion and reducing food-borne infections.

Besides that, it prevents colon cancer and helps counter acid reflux or heartburns. Following is the list of other significant health benefits of fenugreek seeds.

  • Health benefits of fenugreek in weight loss – Drinking fenugreek water on an empty stomach boosts the metabolism. Its consumption leads to the production of heat, which helps to lose weight. Also, consuming fenugreek water reduces appetite, which helps reduce weight certainly. Methi also has soluble fibre which helps in reducing cholesterol especially LDL, controls blood sugar levels and helps lose weight by suppressing appetite if taken soaked overnight on empty stomach in the morning.
  • Health benefits of methi promote better digestion – The fenugreek water is an antacid. By consuming it daily, the digestive system is strengthened and problems like bloating can be avoided easily. Anti-inflammatory properties present in fenugreek helps in relaxing the stomach.
  • Health benefits of fenugreek in diabetes control – fenugreek encourages the slower absorption of sugars and also stimulates insulin. Diabetics and people on the borderline of diabetes reap many benefits in drinking warm fenugreek water.
  • Health Benefits of methi for kidneys – fenugreek water, especially when drunk warm, flush out the toxins from the body. That is why it is recommended as your wake-up elixir. It helps the kidneys to function and also reduces the risk of kidney stones.
  • Health Benefits of fenugreek as an anti-inflammatory – Because of the anti-inflammatory properties of fenugreek, this decoction benefits sufferer from arthritis, chronic coughs, bronchitis, mouth ulcers, boils, etc.
  • Health Benefits of methi for clearing your sinuses – fenugreek has properties associated with being a natural expectorant. It can make it easier for you to cough up phlegm, mucus, and all sorts of nasty stuff responsible for making your head feel like it weighs a ton.
  • Health benefits of fenugreek in anti-ageing – While fenugreek won’t necessarily dip your toe in the proverbial fountain of youth, it can at the very least make it easier to look more vibrant. It’s said that the high antioxidant quality that lurks within the herb’s seeds can help fight the free radicals responsible for moving the ageing process forward.
  • Health benefits of methi for lowering blood cholesterol – fenugreek helps to reduce cholesterol level, especially that of low-density lipoprotein (LDL). They are known to be a rich source of steroidal saponins that prevent the absorption of cholesterol and triglycerides.
  • Health benefits of fenugreek as a remedy for fever and sore throat – fenugreek, when taken with a teaspoon of lemon and honey, can work wonders to reduce fever by nourishing the body. The soothing effect of mucilage in fenugreek also helps in relieving cough and pain from sore throat.
  • Health benefits of methi in preventing colon cancer – The fibre content (saponins, mucilage, etc.) of methi binds to toxins in the food and flush them out. This, in turn, helps to protect the mucous membrane of the colon from cancer.
  • Health benefits of fenugreek as a dietary supplement – fenugreek is used as a dietary supplement for diabetes, to stimulate milk production during breastfeeding, and for other health conditions.

Does fenugreek increase testosterone?

Can fenugreek boost your testosterone levels?

A study that those menu who took a daily 500-mg fenugreek supplement containing concentrated amounts of protodioscin experienced improvements in their testosterone.

The study found that testosterone levels increased by up to 46% in an impressive 90% of the participants.

What’s more, the majority of the fenugreek supplement group experienced improvements in mood, energy, libido, and sperm count.

Testosterone is a sex hormone in both men and women that affects sexual function, energy levels, cognitive function, bone health, mood, and more.

Your testosterone levels naturally decline as you grow older, and health conditions like obesity and diabetes are associated with low testosterone, regardless of age.

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Fenugreek or Methi - Make Kasoori Methi, Dried Fenugreek Leaves Recipe

Fenugreek or Methi - Make Kasoori Methi, Dried Fenugreek Leaves Recipe - Kasoori Methi refers to dried leaves of the fenugreek plant. It is a herb with a slightly bittersweet taste. Kasoori Methi is used as a flavouring spice in Indian curries & parathas. It has a strong and distinctive flavouring characteristics that tantalise your taste buds!
Course Condiment, Spices
Cuisine Indian
Diet Vegan, Vegetarian
Keyword Dried Fenugreek Leaves, Dried Methi, fenugreek, Fenugreek Leaves, Homemade Kasuri Methi, How to make kasoori methi at home, Kasoori Methi, Kasoori Methi Recipe, Kasure Methi, Kasure Methi Recipe, Kasuri Methi, Kasuri Methi Recipe, methi, Methi LEaves
Prep Time 5 minutes
Cook Time 1 day
Total Time 1 day 5 minutes
Servings 30 dishes
Calories 4kcal
Author Sumit Malhotra

Ingredients

  • 1 kilo Fenugreek Leaves Methi
  • 2 day Vitamin D Sunlight

Instructions

  • Remove thick stems from the bundle of methi leaves or fenugreek leaves.
  • Put the leaves in a colander & wash fenugreek leaves well to remove any dirt or impurities under running water.
  • Once clean, drain methi completely and roughly chop them small.
  • Spread methi over a clean cloth or a bedsheet.
  • Cover it with another sheet or even muslin cloth if available.
  • Place it under the sun and let fenugreek leaves dry for a couple of days.
  • Once dried, crush kasoori methi in your palm. They should powder easily.
  • Store kasoori methi in an airtight jar and use in your dishes.

Notes

  • The recipe calories are for 100 grams of kasoori methi.
  • Sunlight time is for peak summers when the fenugreek leaves dry quicker.

Kasoori methi (कसूरी मेथी) | fenugreek leaves | trigonella foenum-graecum

What is the story behind Kasoori Methi?

Where did Kasoori Methi originate from?

The kasoori part of the name comes from the Kasur (or Kasoor), as mall village near Lahore in Punjab, Pakistan where fenugreek grew wild.

Kasur is also the resting place of sufi Bulleh Shah. It is said, the climate and soil at Kasoor at the time was favourable for growing a very aromatic variety of the fenugreek plant.

The methi grown in this region was considered one of the best. Hence, whether dried or fresh methi from the Kasur region was known as Kasuri methi or Kasoori methi.

Because of its popularity, now “any dried fenugreek leaves or dried methi” is colloquially called Kasuri Methi.

What is Kasturi Methi?

Is Kasturi Methi the same as Kasoori Methi?

Kasturi Methi is a misnomer for Kasure or Kasoori Methi. It seems lot of us, bloggers and chefs alike, have succumbed to it.

Kasur is a place in West Punjab famous for origination of “Kasuri” methi or dried fenugreek leaves.

“Kasturi” means musk, a strong smelling brownish substance secreted by the male musk deer for scent-marking. Kasturi has become an modified version of Kasuri probably because of its aroma.

Having stated that, it is important to know that the bouquet of aroma of Kasuri methi is absolutely dissimilar to that of Musk or Kasturi and hence unrelated to each other.

How to Make Kasoori Methi in a Microwave Oven?

How Can I Make Instant Kasure Methi in Microwave Oven?

However, you can make Kasoori Methi or Kasure Methi easily in a microwave at home to harness the health benefits of fenugreek. And, that too in 10 minutes flat. Here is how to do it.
  1. Just pluck the fresh leaves from the stem and discard the stems. Once done, wash the methi leaves well so that the dirt washes off properly.
  2. Place the cleaned leaves on a plate and dry them using a kitchen towel.
  3. Once they dry out completely, place the leaves in a microwave-safe bowl.
  4. Spread it evenly, and place it inside the microwave.
  5. Dry roast it for about 3 minutes on maximum temperature.
  6. Remove from the microwave and use a spatula to mix through.
  7. Roast them again for about 3 minutes on maximum temperature.
  8. Remove and stir again. Roast again for 3 minutes.
  9. Remove, cool them down and crush with your hands.
  10. Bottle in an airtight container and use whenever you wish to

What are the side effects of fenugreek?

What are the risks associated with fenugreek?

Fenugreek may affect uterine contractions and be unsafe for women with hormone-sensitive cancers. Fenugreek is likely not safe for use during pregnancy as it may have abortifacient effects.

Some people are allergic to fenugreek, including those with peanut allergies or chickpea allergies.

Fenugreek seeds can cause diarrhea, dyspepsia, abdominal distention, flatulence, perspiration, and a maple-like smell to sweat, urine or breast milk.

There is a risk of hypoglycemia particularly in people with diabetes, and it may interfere with the activity of anti-diabetic drugs.

Because of the high content of coumarin-like compounds in fenugreek, it may interfere with the activity and dosing of anticoagulants and antiplatelet drugs.

FINALLY, TO SUM IT UP

All About Fenugreek & Fenugreek Seeds | Uses & Benefits of Methi Dana

Fenugreek seeds | methi dana | trigonella foenum-graecum

Fenugreek is an annual plant in the family Fabaceae, with leaves consisting of three small ovate to oblong leaflets. It is cultivated worldwide.

Methi or fenugreek seeds and leaves form a common but important ingredient in Indian subcontinent households. It is used in almost every Indian preparation like dal, paratha or curry.

Fenugreek or methi is a also a rich reservoir of medicinal properties as well that imparts many health benefits.

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