Gajar Matar Aloo is a staple dish in north india during the winter months. This punjabi style dry curry is made by sautéing winter vegetables like red carrots & fresh peas, potatoes and fenugreek leaves. Since it is minimally spiced, it is perfect to serve on days when you feel like heaving something light, also good way to serve vegetables to kids.
Serve Gajar matar sabzi with indian bread like parathas, roti or as a side to dal chawal for a comforting meal.
Whenever I see juicy red carrots at store, I am instantly reminded of this wholesome sabzi made with nutritious vegetables that mom used to make growing up. It was a regular on the table during winters when delhi gajar floods the markets. Combined with peas, the juicy sweetish carrots make for a hearty vegetable with a perfect balance of texture and flavors.
Most people use a cumin ginger hing tadka for making gajar matar, however I make it a little differently. It's still minimally spiced and not heavy. I make a saucy onion tomato base and then cook the vegetables in it. I like this method because the sabji isn't too dry when made this way.
If you are looking for a light vegetarian side dish to your meals, this sabji is an absolute delight. You dont need any fancy ingredients-fresh vegetables and about 20-30 minutes!
About the Recipe
- Full of goodness of vegetables - Potatoes, carrots, peas and a handful of fresh methi leaves, this sabzi is full of vitamins and fiber.
- A great side dish- Its not too heavy. I make a base of onions and tomatoes, red chilli powder and turmeric. Keeping it spices minimally, brings out the natural taste of the carrots and peas.
- Easy and Comes together in 20 minutes. I usually chop the vegetables beforehand and from there it barely takes anytime. You may use frozen diced carrots and peas to save time.
- Vegan & Naturally Gluten free.
- Kid friendly- My kids love to eat carrots and peas this way. Adding potatoes only adds to the taste. Here in States, methi is not that bitter so my kids dont mind it, you can adjust or skip the quantity of methi.
Carrots - Orange carrots or red carrots available in indian stores can be used for making gajar matar sabji.
Green peas- It would be great if you can find fresh green peas (I have seen at Trader Joes & Krogers) else use frozen.
Spices - Red Chilli Powder, Turmeric, garam masala powder and amchoor. Amchoor powder is dry mango powder and is used widely in punjabi dishes. If you dont have it, us fresh lemon juice instead.
Tips & Notes
- Chopping the vegetables in the same size is very important. Dice the carrots and potatoes in a similar fashion. Don't cut them in large chunks. This ensures that they cook in about the same time and are easy to eat as well.
- If you are using fresh matar (peas), add it along with potatoes and carrots so that it cooks together. Frozen peas can be added later when you add the methi.
- You may skip potatoes in this recipe. Or add sweet potatoes instead of regular potatoes if you wish.
- I like to make this sabzi in a kadai or pan. If you wish you can make it in pressure cooker or Instant Pot.
- I feel that the texture of vegetables is a huge part of the taste of this sabzi. I like the vegetables to have a slight crunch. Cook for a little longer than noted times if you referee soft cooked vegetables.
- If you do not have fresh methi and still want methi taste, add a little bit of crushed kasuri methi at the end of cooking.
How To Make Gajar Matar Aloo
- Prep all your vegetables and keep them ready. Dice the carrot and potatoes. Shell the fresh peas or thaw the frozen ones. Chop the onion & crush tomatoes. Chop the methi leaves (if using).
- In a pan, heat up the mustard oil on medium flame. Once hot, add teaspoon cumin seeds and let crackle.
- Add the chopped onions along with garlic and ginger. Brown lightly.
- Add the tomatoes next. Cook for 2-3 minutes. Add red chilli powder & turmeric powder, salt.
- Next, add the carrots, potatoes. If using fresh peas add right now.
- Add warm water and cover the pan with a lid. Let the vegetables steam for 8-10 minutes on low flame or until fork tender. Keep on checking a few times while the vegetables steam.
- Uncover and add the chopped methi. Stir for 1-3 minutes until methi is wilted.
- Finish with amchoor and garam masala. Garnish with fresh chopped cilantro.
Other Similar Recipes
How To Serve Gajar Matar Ki Sabzi
- Serve with flatbreads like warm rotis, paratha and naan. Add a bowl of salted yogurt and green chutney.
- Serve with dal chawal (lentils & rice).
- Make wraps adding shredded cheese.
- Serve as a side to grilled chicken or meats.
- Serve as a bowl of warm salad with a dollop of yogurt.
Finely shredded kale or chard tastes very good in this preparation.
Methi is naturally bitter sweet in taste.So I dont mind its unique sharpness. Here in States, the fresh methi from stores or even the frozen packs from indian stores have always tasted great, I dont remember having super bitter sabji. To tackle the bitterness, you can soak the methi in salted water for 30 minutes. Also saute the methi in a couple teaspoons of oil, taste it and then add it to the sabji. Just add a handful for flavor if you are worried about the sanji becoming bitter.
Gajar Matar Aloo
- 2 medium potatoes yield 1 cup diced potatoes
- 3-4 carrots yield 1.5 cup diced carrots
- ½ cup (heaped) peas fresh or frozen
- 1 cup fresh methi fenugreek leaves, no stems
- 3 tablespoon mustard oil or any cooking oil
- ½ teaspoon cumin seeds
- ½ cup chopped onion
- 1 tablespoon ginger garlic chopped
- ½ cup tomatoes blend 2 medium tomatoes in a food processor or finely chop them
- ½ teaspoon red chilli powder
- ¼ teaspoon turmeric powder
- ¼ teaspoon sugar
- 1 teaspoon salt
- ½ teaspoon garam masala
- ¼ teaspoon amchoor dry mango powder / or use fresh lemon juice
- MethodWash and peel the carrots and potatoes. Pat dry and dice the potatoes Place soaked in a bowl of water while you chop the other vegetables.
- Dice the carrots. Wash the methi leaves under running stream of water and completely dry them before chopping. If you are using fresh pea, shell the pods, if using frozen, thaw them.
- In a karahi or heavy skillet, heat up the mustard oil on medium until slightly smoky. Crackle the cumin seeds and add the chopped onions, garlic and ginger.
- Cook the onion on medium heat until the raw smell goes away however don't brown too much.
- Add the tomatoes, sugar, salt red chilli & turmeric next. Saute for minute or two on medium without drying tomatoes too much. Add the carrots , potatoes and fresh peas. Mix and stir with the masala for 2 minutes to warm up the veggies.
- Add about ½ cup of water and cover the kadai with a lid. Let the vegetables cook for 5-7 minutes on medium low heat till the carrots become tender(or about 90% cooked).Adjust the time of cooking (longer) if you like soft cooked vegetables
- Open the lid add the hopped methi. Stir to combine everything together.Let cook for another 3-4 minutes till the methi leaves wilt down. I like the vegetables to have a bite so I do not cook them for too long.
- For the last 1-2 minutes of cooking, bump up the heat to high, add amchoor and garam masala. Saute the vegetables for a minute on high heat for a charred taste. We call this process "bhuno" (saute on high heat) This makes the stir fry glisten and adds a depth of flavor.
- Finish with chopped cilantro. Serve.