This herb has a long history of use dating to the ancient Egyptians, Greeks and Romans. Its name stems from the Greek Foenum-graecum, which means Greek hay. The whole seeds are used to make tinctures, while powdered Fenugreek seed is a component of curry seasoning and an alternative to real maple in the manufacturing of candy and other confections.
India is the largest producer of fenugreek seed, followed by Iran, Egypt, China, Turkey, Morocco, Spain and France.
The whole seeds, which are often roasted to reduce bitterness, are used in Middle Eastern cuisine to flavor bean dishes called daals. The seeds are also sprouted to produce young greens sold at market in bunches as Samudra Methi.