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Fenugreek is an ingredient in some curries, such as with potatoes in cuisines of the Indian subcontinent to make "aloo methi" ("potato fenugreek") curry. Sprouted seeds and fenugreek greens are used in salads. When harvested as greens, fenugreek is known as samudra methi in Maharashtra, especially in and around Mumbai, where it is often grown in sandy tracts near the sea, hence the name samudra, "ocean" in Sanskrit. Samudra methi is also grown in dry river beds in the Gangetic plains. When sold as a vegetable, the young plants are harvested with their roots still attached and sold in small groupings in the markets and bazaars.
In Turkish cuisine, fenugreek seeds are used for making a paste known as çemen. Cumin, black pepper, and other spices are added into it, especially to make pastırma.
In Egyptian cuisine, peasants in Upper Egypt add fenugreek seeds and maize to their pita bread to produce aish merahrah, a staple of their diet.
Fenugreek is used in Eritrean and Ethiopian cuisine. The word for fenugreek in Amharic is abesh (or abish), and the seed is used in Ethiopia as a natural herbal medicine in the treatment of diabetes.
Yemenite Jews following the interpretation of Rabbi Shelomo Yitzchak (Rashi) believe fenugreek, which they call hilbeh, hilba, helba, or halba "חילבה", to be the Talmudic rubia "רוביא". When the seed kernels are ground and mixed with water they greatly expand; hot spices, turmeric and lemon juice are added to produce a frothy relish eaten with a sop. The relish is also called hilbeh; it is reminiscent of curry. It is eaten daily and ceremonially during the meal of the first and/or second night of the Jewish New Year, Rosh Hashana.
Major fenugreek-producing countries are Afghanistan, Argentina, Bangladesh, Egypt, France, India, Iran, Morocco, Nepal, Pakistan, Spain, and Turkey. The largest producer is India. Fenugreek production in India is concentrated in the states of Gujarat, Haryana, Madhya Pradesh, Maharashtra, Punjab, Rajasthan, Uttar Pradesh, and Uttarakhand. Rajasthan accounts for over 80% of India's output.