Welcome to Manipur, the region’s unique blend of cultures and abundant natural resources. In this blog, we will take you on a delectable journey of the famous food of Manipur, with insight into traditional dishes that make this state a food lover’s paradise.
About Manipur Food
Manipur Food is primarily non-vegetarian, with an emphasis on local herbs, aromatic spices, and fermented ingredients. Manipur cuisine primarily consists of boiled or steamed dishes, reflecting its simplicity.
Fish is a staple food of Manipur and holds a special significant role in food culture. Fermented fish, in particular, occupies a prominent place in the traditional food of Manipur.
Here is the name of some Popular food in Manipur.
- Singju –Oil-free Manipuri food
- Chak Hao– Sweet dish of Manipur
- Chamthong –Manipur Special Stew
- Morok Metpa– Special Manipuri Chutney
- Eromba– Fermented food-based dish
- Paknam– Non-Vegetarian Snack
- Alu Kangmet– Potato Special food
- Nga-Thongba – Manipuri Style Fish curry dish
- Ootti Thongba/Utti Thongba– Green peas Special food
- Peruk Kangsu– Chutney made of Special herb
- Chagem-Pomba– Special Food of Manipur
- Maroi Thongba– Festive special food of Manipur
- Sana Thongba– Paneer dish from Manipur cuisine
- Mangal Ooti– Kang Festival Special dish
Must try the Famous Food of Manipur
The cuisine of Manipur reflects the region’s cultural diversity and the use of fresh and locally sourced ingredients. We have listed below 15 delicious Manipur famous food with complete details
“Singju, a special salad made with vegetable leaves from Manipur, is a delightful choice for health-conscious foodies. This Manipuri food is prepared with cabbage, coriander leaves, onions, and ginger, alongside ingredients like lotus stem and various other vegetables.
The salad also features additions such as papaya, banana flower, chilli powder, and a mix of herbs. It proudly stands as one of the healthy food options from Manipur.”
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“Chak-hao is a famous sweet dish of Manipur, traditionally prepared during festivals. It is a kheer made with black rice, milk, and cardamom, creating a delightful blend of flavours. This delicious dish is garnished with raisins, almonds, and other dry fruits, adding a touch of richness to its exquisite taste.”
3. Chamthong or Kangshoi
“Chamthong is a popular dish from Manipur. This exotic stew dish is made with seasonal vegetables and spices, making it a delightful culinary experience. Widely enjoyed in households, the dish is best served hot, accompanied by rice.”
4. Morok Metpa
“Morok Metpa is a popular chutney from Manipur cuisine. It is important to note that this chutney is prepared with Nagri Fish and green dried chilli, giving it a distinctive and flavorful taste.
Served with all kinds of meals, Morok Metpa holds a special place as the most famous food in Manipur.”
“This Manipuri delicacy is tailor-made for fish food lovers. The dish is typically prepared using fermented fish called “Ngari” along with vegetables. The fish and vegetables are blended together to form a paste-like consistency.
Before serving, the dish is garnished with coriander leaves and Maroi, enhancing its visual appeal and taste.”
6. Paknam / Paaknam
“Paaknam is a tasty snack from Manipur cuisine, resembling a pancake in appearance. The food is prepared with a batter of besan, herbs, chilis, vegetables, and the popular fermented fish of Manipur, “Ngari”.
The batter is then wrapped with a banana leaf and steam-cooked to perfection. Paaknam is best enjoyed with hot coffee or tea, making it a delightful treat for the taste buds.”
7. Alu Kangmet
“It is a very simple side dish made with potatoes. The dish involves boiling the potatoes and then mashing them with spices and mustard oil. It is typically served alongside rice or another main dish.”
“It is a fish curry dish prepared in the traditional style of Manipur, and it stands among the most popular dishes in the region. Small pieces of fish are cooked with a blend of spices, creating a mouth-watering and traditional delicacy cherished in Manipur.”
9. Ootti Thongba/Utti Thongba
“The dish is crafted from green peas and lentils, making it one of the healthiest foods from Manipur. Prepared with soaked lentils and a medley of spices, it comes in various delectable varieties. Health-conscious individuals will find this dish highly recommended for its nutritious goodness.”
10. Peruk Kangsu
“Peruk Kansu is one of the popular traditional foods of Manipur. It is prepared with Peruk, a medicinal plant, along with boiled yellow peas, boiled potatoes, and fermented fish chutney. All the ingredients are mashed together and eaten raw. The dish offers many variations to suit different tastes.”
Chagem pombe is a flavorful and aromatic thick curry dish deeply rooted in Manipur’s culinary traditions. The star ingredients of this dish are the fermented soybeans known as Hawaijar, and the indigenous herb Chagem, which lends its unique taste and medicinal properties to the curry.
To prepare this traditional delicacy, the Hawaijar (fermented soybeans) are carefully washed and soaked to soften them. They are then cooked with the Chagem herb, which imparts a distinct earthy flavour to the curry.
The dish is simmered until it reaches a rich, creamy consistency, creating a delightful harmony of textures and tastes.
Champhut is one of the simple & easy dishes from Manipur. It is a boiled vegetable with salt or sugar. As per the vegetable, you can find variations in the name.
13. Maroi Thongba
One of the highlights of Manipur’s festive feasts is the famous dish made with Maroi (Allium) and a delightful array of other ingredients. Maroi, a local term for Allium vegetables, is a group that includes various members such as garlic chives, wild leeks, and spring onions, among others.
To create this delectable dish, the Maroi vegetables are carefully selected and cleaned. They are then expertly combined with other flavorful ingredients, which may include locally sourced herbs, aromatic spices, and sometimes even indigenous fruits or vegetables that are in season.
14. Sana Thongba
In the diverse culinary landscape of Manipuri cuisine, Paneer, a versatile and beloved ingredient, finds its way into various dishes, each bearing the unique imprint of Manipuri flavours. Paneer, also known as Indian cottage cheese, is a popular choice for its creamy texture and ability to absorb the rich spices and herbs used in Manipuri cooking.
15. Mangal Ooti
This simple yet delightful peas dish holds immense popularity as a breakfast or dinner option. this traditional side dish takes very popular during the Kang festival in the region. The preparation involves cooking yellow dried peas in a soda and mustard oil tadka, resulting in a burst of flavors that make it a perfect accompaniment to any Indian bread.
In conclusion, Manipur’s locals have a deep fondness for fresh vegetables, cherishing the unique produce like Kolamni, Yendem, Koukhaa, and Sougri, exclusive to this region. The cuisine of Manipur incorporates various medicinal herbs, contributing to the dishes’ health benefits. Notably, the simplicity of Manipuri food does not compromise its nutritional value, as vegetables are abundant in nutrients.
The Meities (Community) Cuisine beautifully represents the traditional food culture of Manipur, where people take pride in cultivating their vegetables in home gardens. The extensive use of aromatic herbs and roots further adds to the distinctive flavours that make food of Manipur truly remarkable and celebrated among its inhabitants.
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A. Sekhmai Yu, Atingba are some popular drinks of Manipur Cuisine.
Chak-hao-kheer, Pitha , Madhurjan, heingan are some Popular sweet dishes of Manipur.