Gajar Matar (Indian Carrots and Peas)

January 15, 2015 (Last Updated: March 14, 2020)
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a shallow bowl filled with curried chicken, white rice, and cooked carrots and peas

Earlier this week I shared a delicious recipe for Murghi aur Masoor Dal, or Bombay-style Chicken with Red Split Lentils. I paired this braised Indian chicken dish with a vibrant side dish called Gajar Matar, or carrots and peas. I have to say, carrots and peas never tasted so good.

overhead view of cooked carrots and peas in a nonstick skillet

This is a very simple vegetarian side dish that is packed full of flavor. Onion, garlic, and ginger start the dish, but then many different spices are layered into the mix. The optional addition of pomegranate seeds (hey, they’re in season right now!) adds a bit of crunch and a tart burst of flavor every bite or two.

a closeup of cooked carrots and peas in a skillet

I actually halved this recipe since it was going to be a side dish, and I already had a ton of chicken in lentils and basmati rice. Half the recipe was easily enough for three of us as a side dish with our chicken, lentils, and rice. This Gajar Matar is high on my list for future Indian dinners, both for its simplicity and incredible flavor.

a wide view of cooked peas and carrots in a nonstick skillet
overhead view of cooked carrots and peas in a nonstick skillet

Gajar Matar (Indian Carrots and Peas)

Victoria
This vegan Indian side dish features bright carrots and peas, and an array of warm spices. It's a perfect side dish for your next home-cooked Indian meal.
Prep Time 20 mins
Cook Time 20 mins
Total Time 40 mins
Course Side Dish
Cuisine Indian
Servings 6 servings
Calories 151 kcal

Ingredients
  

  • 1 small onion roughly chopped
  • 1 garlic clove roughly chopped
  • 1 inch piece of ginger peeled and chopped
  • 1/4 cup vegetable oil
  • 1 teaspoon cumin seeds
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons ground turmeric
  • 325 g (11 1/2 ounces) carrots, diced
  • 1 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1 teaspoon ground coriander
  • 250 g (1 2/3 cups) peas
  • 1 tablespoon kosher salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon sugar
  • 1/4 teaspoon Indian red chili powder (you can substitute cayenne)
  • 4 teaspoons pomegranate seeds (optional)
  • 1/2 teaspoon garam masala

Instructions
 

  • Put the onion, garlic and ginger in a food processor and blend until finely chopped.
  • Heat the oil in a frying pan, then add the onion mixture and stir over high heat for 2 minutes, or until softened. Reduce the heat to medium and add the cumin seeds and turmeric. After 1 minute, add the carrot and stir for 2 minutes. Add the ground cumin and coriander and fry for 2 minutes. Stir in the peas, salt, sugar, and chili powder. Add 2 tablespoons water if using frozen peas, or 4 tablespoons if using fresh peas.
  • Reduce the heat to a simmer, add the pomegranate seeds, if using, and stir before partially covering the pan. Simmer for 10 to 15 minutes, or until the carrot and peas are tender. Stir in the garam masala and serve.

Notes & Nutrition

  • This recipe uses kosher salt (aka cooking salt, kitchen salt, coarse salt outside of the US). If you are using table salt, definitely scale down the salt as that is a saltier type of salt! The type of salt will make a big difference in how salty your food tastes, so keep that in mind.
Adapted from The Food of India
Servings 6.0 * calories 151 * Total Fat 10 g * Saturated Fat 1 g * Monounsaturated Fat 2 g * Polyunsaturated Fat 6 g * Trans Fat 0 g * Cholesterol 0 mg * Sodium 607 mg * Potassium 326 mg * Total Carbohydrate 13 g * Dietary Fiber 4 g * Sugars 6 g * Protein 3 g
*All nutritional information is based on third-party calculations and should be considered estimates. Actual nutritional content will vary with brands used, measuring methods, portion sizes and more.*

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