Methi Thepla is an unleavened flatbread very frequently consumed by people along the Western parts of India. This dish originates from the state of Gujarat where it is made almost on a daily basis in households as it is a preferred snack bread carried by people to work or while travelling, as it is convenient, non-messy, light and has a fairly good shelf life (i.e. remains unspoilt for few days).
Ingredients and Preparation
Wheat Flour, minced Green Chillies, Red Chilli Powder, Haldi (turmeric) powder, Ginger & Garlic paste, Ajwain (caraway or carom seeds), Hing (asafoetida) powder, Methi or Fenugreek leaves, Coriander powder, Cumin Seeds powder, Yoghurt, Salt to taste and Oil as needed are the main ingredients needed.
All the ingredients are mixed together in a large bowl along with about a teaspoon of cooking oil and kneaded well using water. Uniform sized balls are portioned out, rolled into flat round thin rotis. The methi theplas are roasted one by one (on both sides) on a hot griddle using minimal oil.
These are usually served hot along with a bowl of yoghurt, raita or with pickles. It tastes great even by itself without any accompaniments.
A serving size of 1 Methi Thepla of ~ 50 g supplies-
• A total of 127.15 calories of which Calories from Fat is 46.53
• Total Fat content is 5.3 g of which Saturated Fat: 0.87 g; Cholesterol is 0.92 mg
• Sodium: 206.24 mg and Potassium: 153.69 mg
• Total Carbohydrates content is 17.18 g with dietary fiber being 2.96 g, Sugar 1.3 g and remainder being other carbohydrate components
• Protein content is 4.27 g.
Fenugreek leaves are highly nutritious being a good source of iron, potassium, calcium, vitamins A, C, K, folates and fibre. Therefore the methi thepla would be suitable for consumption by the obese, those with elevated cholesterol and also diabetics as fenugreek has proven blood sugar lowering properties. The spices and herbs used like ajwain and coriander facilitate better digestion and add taste and nutritive value to the dish.
The best way to improve the nutritional value of Methi theplas is by using a combination of flours rather than only wheat flour in its preparation. Mixing soy flour, barley and oat flours in measured amounts with whole wheat flour would help enhance the B-vitamin as well as mineral content by increasing calcium, phosphorus and iron content. Barley is rich in magnesium and is known to be good for the heart, blood pressure and diabetes. It is beneficial to post-menopausal women owing to its phytonutrient content.
A valuable addition would be the use of whey water in place of using plain water while kneading the flour to make methi theplas. Whey water that is high in lactalbumin and lactoglobulin proteins enhances the nutritive value of the dish considerably. It acts as a rich source of essential amino acids that promote lean muscle growth and protein synthesis. Thus Methi Theplas are a good choice for athletes and body-builders as well.