Food of Manipur
If one needed to explain Manipuri food in one word, it would be – healthy. The ingredients of Manipuri cuisines is mainly chilli and pepper thus making it devoid of any other form of masalas, thus rendering food organic and very healthy. They also do not use oil which is indeed a very positive effect on the body.
Manipuri primarily cook vegetables with fish being their complimentary food besides the vegetables. Usage of less oil has been in vogue since the olden times and one visiting the Manipur rural areas are sure to experience this taste of oil-less food.
Ngri is a type of fermented fish which carries a very strong smell and is loved immensely by the locals. This item is used in a lot of dishes prepared here.
The staple food of Manipur consists of rice, a lot of leafy vegetables and fish. They love vegetables so much that one can see vegetables growing in their own houses. The cuisines also tend to be very seasonal since the people here grow the food in their own households itself. The taste of the Manipuri cuisine is very much different from the rest of the Indian mainland cuisines owing to the extravagant use of local herbs and other aromatic spices in its preparation.
Herbs of Manipur
Herbs and spices form a very important part of Manipuri cuisine. Since they primary have their food boiled, thus it is only these herbs and aroma giving spices that do the wonder of giving the food it required essence. The herbs are grown by the people in their own households. They do believe in growing their own vegetables and herbs and having food from their own garden. Some of the inevitable herbs used in Manipuri cuisines are as follows:
- Awaa phadigom (Mexican coriander)
- Mayang-ton (Lemon Basil)
- Toning-khok (Chameleon plant)
- Phakpai (Vietnamese coriander)
- Chantruk (Wavy Bittercress)
- Nungshi hidak (Mint)
- Maroi napaakpi (Hooker chives)
- Maroi naakuppi (Chinese chives)
- Kang-hu mapaan
Cuisines of Manipur
The Manipuris make their food mainly steamed and boiled rather than frying it. The Manipuri platter mainly consists of rice, vegetables, salad, a curry of fish and meat. The food definitely is tasty, but the aroma is more than heavenly. The people here are lovers of both vegetarian and non vegetarian dishes.
Mentioned below are some of the cuisines made in Manipur:
Chamthong or Kangshoi
This is a boiled dish prepared with seasonal vegetables cut along with onions, maroi, cloves, ginger, garlic and salt. These vegetables are boiled and then topped with Ngari and served hot. Soupy in nature, this dish is served with rice.
Eromba is a very popular dish, not only in Manipur but also in the other nearby states. The dish is prepared by boiling a lot vegetables along with dried fish. The smell it emits once the dish is ready is terrific. The dish once readied is garnished with coriander leaves and Maroi.
Kang-ngou or kaang-hou
This is however a fried dish which is prepared by using various local herbs and spices.
Another of its traditional boiled dishes, A-nganba is a dish where the used vegetables are bit different from the regular items. The vegetables used here are French beans, pumpkin, carrots, peas, etc amongst others.
A very tasty and delicious chutney made with green and dried chilllis and then the coarse paste is boiled with Ngari and then mashed with salt.
A vegetarian dish prepared by the use of paneer in its ethnic Manipuri style.
Singju is a very delicious type of local salad where there is no vegetable one will not find. It consists of onions, cabbage leaves, ginger, coriander, lotus stems, sinju pan and many other seasonal vegetables which is finely mixed with Ngari.
A type of local popular Manipuri dish wherein the main components are yellow peas and ushoi.
It is a type of fish cake.
Another fish curry prepared with the usage of local herbs and spices.
Restaurants in Manipur
Being a tourist spot, Imphal the capital of Manipur receives a lot of tourist all round the year. With the increase tourists one tends to explore its rich cultural heritage as well. Thus, with the passage of time a lot of restaurants and food joints have come up in Manipur thus giving the visitors a chance to taste the local ethnic food and relish it. Also Read: Food of Imphal | Five Best Restaurants in Manipur
Some of the restaurants in Manipur where one can taste its ethnicity are as follows:Blue Chilli
Kwakeithel Thokchom Leikai,
Phone No.: 098561 47207Naoba's Chakhumang
Next to Axis Bank ATM,
RIMS Road, Thangmeiband,
Phone No.: 0385 241 4827Fire Bowl Restaurant
Manipur 795005Classic Café
Inside The Classic Hotel,
Phone No.: 3852443969Life Cafe
Phone No.: +91 8413-937285Flavour
Opposite Dm College,
India Happy Belly
DM College Road
Near Abc Godown,
Phone No.: +91 98 56 482493Cafe Rita
The Classic Hotel,
India Michelle's Sweet Temptation
Yaiskul Main Road,
Phone No.: +91 9436021708People's Popular Canteen Number 4
Behind Polo Ground,
Imphal 795001Fresh Point
Phone No.: 08860559927Uptown Cafe
Keishampat Aheibam Leirak
Opp: Cada Office,
Phone No.: 09774684811Thoibi Hotel Restaurant
ImphalCine View Restaurant
Phone No.: +91 82 57 034522Elrey Restaurant
National Highway 150 B
ImphalTakuppi Thokchom Restaurant
Sagolband Moirang Leirak,
Manipur 795001A to Z
Manipur 795001Rita Café
Imphal, Manipur 795001
Phone No.: +91-385-2443967Sumo's Hotel