Recipe: Carrots and Green Peas with Green Coriander (Cilantro) | Gajar Matar Sabzi

I miss Priti. My friend was such a good cook and mentor. We had some wonderful meals together. She shared this wonderful but easy dish with me.  Miss you Priti. Hope all is well with you.

This dish is cooked with chopped green coriander for 30 mins or so. While this may seem unusual outside of India (coriander is normally used fresh, as a garnish), it is akin to using a coriander paste. The resulting flavours are great. Feel free to garnish with some fresh coriander if desired.

Similar recipes include Carrot RiceCarrots with Cumin and Ginger, South Indian Green Pea Soup, Green Pea Pilaf, and Green Bean and Carrot Poriyal.

Browse all of our Carrot recipes and Pea recipes. Our Indian recipes are here and Indian Essentials here. Check out our easy Mid Winter recipes too.

This recipe is one of the vegetarian recipes from our first blog which was in existence from 1995 – 2006. You can find more recipes from that blog in our Retro Recipes series.

Carrots and Green Peas with Green Coriander (Cilantro) | Gajar Matar Sabzi

Carrots and Green Peas with Ginger and Green Coriander | Gajar Matar Sabzi

Priti introduced me to many of the dimensions of Indian cooking, and particularly the use of Coriander leaves (cilantro). This dish goes well with any dish, especially plain Mung Dhal,  rice and potatoes with cumin. It can also be served alone with pooris or parathas.

1 piece ginger equivalent to 5cm by 1.5 cm, peeled and chopped and 1 garlic clove or use 1 tspn ginger-garlic paste 3 – 4 young carrots, about 325 g 3 Tblspn ghee
0.25 tspn black mustard seed 3 fenugreek seeds 0.25 tspn ground turmeric
0.5 cup coarsely chopped green coriander 0.5 green chilli, sliced 225g peas, shelled, or use frozen peas
0.5 tspn ground coriander 0.5 tspn cumin seeds (or use cumin powder) 0.5 tspn garam masala
0.5 tspn salt  squeeze lemon juice (optional)

Put the ginger and garlic in the blender and blend with 1.5 Tblspn water until smooth. This will take about a minute.

Peel the carrots and slice into 3mm rounds, or dice the carrots if they are a little older.

Heat the ghee in a pan or kadhai (indian wok) on the stove. When very hot, add the mustard and fenugreek seeds. As the mustard seeds begin to pop, add the ginger and garlic paste, keeping your face averted as it will splatter. Turn the heat down and stir fry for 1 – 2 minutes.

Add the green coriander and chilli, and continue cooking, stirring for another 2 minutes, stirring frequently.

Add the peas and carrots and cook for 5 minutes more, stirring frequently so the spice paste coats the vegetables.

Mix in the cumin, coriander powder, turmeric, salt and 3 Tblspn warm water. Stir for a minute, cover, lower heat and cook for 30 minutes – remove the cover for the last 10 minuts or so – continue to stir gently every 10 minutes.  When cooked, the curry will be dry, with oil separating a little and the vegetables looking shiny. In the last 5 minutes of cooking, add the garam masala.

Remove from the heat and lift the vegetables gently out of the pan onto a serving plate. Squeeze a little lemon juice over the vegetables if desired. You can also garnish with a little fresh coriander (optional).

recipe notes
You can also make the ginger-garlic paste in a mortar and pestle, or chop the ginger and garlic together until pastey.

Add 1/2 tspn amchur with the garam masala. Omit the lemon juice.

Add 5 or 6 curry leaves to the mustard seeds, just before adding the ginger-garlic paste to the pan.

If you like onions, add a finely diced onion to the spices before adding the ginger-garlic paste. Saute until very soft, almost browning, and then continue with the recipe.


This recipe is one of the vegetarian recipes from our first blog which was in existence from 1995 – 2006. It is cross posted with our sister site, A Life (Time) of Cooking, and appears here as part of our Retro Recipes series.

browse some of the Indian Preserves and Pickles recipes