In Arunachal Pradesh, there is a strong connection between people, the land and the bounty it provides. In the absence of wide scale commercial farming and supermarkets, it is common to grow some hand-planted produce in one’s own back yard. And wild-harvested foods are plentiful too – without being considered exotic. Here, going to the forest to pick some naturally growing greens is like tapping into any other food source. Coming back… Read More
Think of bananas and tropical images may first spring to mind. But bananas also grow in Bomdila, at an altitude of 2200 meters, and cooks here have devised a clever way of using their huge leaves. These have a light grassy scent and cooking food wrapped in fresh banana leaves infuses it with some of that subtle flavor while sealing in delicious juices. There is no fat added making this a very… Read More
The greatest culinary gift of the streams, pastures and forests of Arunachal Pradesh is an abundance of fresh produce. The Monpa people of West Kameng district live in close connection with nature and have a deep knowledge of both farmed crops and wild edible food resources. Being non-vegetarian, the meat of both wild and domesticated animals like fish, yak and chicken is also used in the preparation of traditional Monpa cuisine. The… Read More
Did you know? Arunachal Pradesh is one of only four states in India which has yaks. The roughly 7000 animals are reared and herded by semi-nomadic Brokpas at altitudes above 2000 meters. In high alpine communities, the yak is a multipurpose animal of high economic significance delivering hide, dung, meat and milk. Cheese made from the raw milk of yaks grazing on verdant pastures dotted with herbs, roots and wildflowers is simply… Read More
Morel mushrooms feature prominently in the local cuisine of Bomdila. Dried and smoked, they impart a note of finesse on various gravies, sauces and soups. At first glance, sweet peas and mint seem unlikely to ignite a fire of flavour. But topped with a swirl of rich morel cream, this soup suddenly tastes sophisticated and delicious. Planning a summer garden party or picnic? Hungry eyes are guaranteed when you pull this out… Read More
Cooking in Arunachal Pradesh is decidedly different than on “mainland” India. Recipes here rarely call for flame-hued chillies, glowing yellow tumeric powder, brick-red mustard seeds or other dried spices. Rather, fresh organic herbs, leaves and tubers are used to add color and aroma to the cornucopia of curries, soups, dals, pickles and chutneys found across the state. Moreover, food is often steamed so nutrients are sealed in and flavors linger pleasantly on… Read More
The cuisines of Arunachal Pradesh vary across the state according to the availability of local ingredients and the food preparation methods particular to each tribe. Imagine a Monpa meal and thoughts of smoked morels, yak’s cheese and Thukpa (hand-rolled noodles) immediately start to tickle the senses. A typical lunch served in Dirang might also include mutton curry, fiery homemade chutney and garden fresh salad… Lip-smacking!