The movie Nelakasham Pachakkadal Chuvanna Bhoomi made many of us include the north east in our itinerary. The distinct culture, tradition and lifestyle of these states never cease to fascinate an explorer and so does their food.
Bounded by Nagaland to the north, Mizoram to the south, Assam to the west and Burma to the east, the state of Manipur has a cuisine, which holds an obsession for fish and potatoes. Most of their main courses will have either of its variants. Keep reading to know about the curious, yet mouth-watering Manipuri cuisine and their popular dishes.
Nga atoiba thongba
Nga thongba is a mouth-watering fish curry popular among the Meitei communitiy of Manipur. Grass carp or rohu fish are commonly used to make the thongba. Ngaa means fish and atoiba means disintegrated. Nag thongba is nothing, but a mashed fish curry that can be served with hot rice.
Chamthong is a Manipuri soupy stew recipe in which various vegetables, leaves and even fish are included. Prepared with seasonal vegetables and a popular fermented fish product called ngari, chamthong is hearty and healthy at the same time.
Don't confuse it with the south Indian hill station Ooty. The ootti we are talking about is ootti thongba, a popular dish across Manipur. No Manipuri festival is complete without serving this soaked, white peas curry. Although it is very simple to cook, you will feel stuffed and drowsy after consuming it.
Chak angouba is a close cousin of fried rice. Cooked long-grain rice is mixed with cooked vegetables and seasoning to make chak agouba. You can also work it out with leftover rice. Fried egg is also added to the dish before serving at some parts of the state.
Chahou kheer or rice kheer is the favorite dessert of Manipur that is commonly served after feasts. They can be prepared in less than 30 minutes with the help of a pressure cooker. Soaked rice, sugar, bay leaves and other ingredients are cooked with milk in a pressure cooker to make the kheer. Raisins, cashew nuts and grated coconut are added to this and cooked again. It is served warm with dry fruit toppings.