BM # 39
Manipur is one of the seven states of north eastern India. We shall cook from this state on the 17th day .This is one of the most beautiful states and is known as Switzerland of India.
Mani means a jewel and Manipur is a land of jewels. It's rich culture excels in every aspect as in dance, theatre, sculpture. I have always loved the costume that they wear for their traditional dance , the reason being my possession of my favorite doll as a kid . I was gifted a manipuri dancer doll by my uncle. The traditional outfit changed every year when i would celebrate the dolls birthday.Mom would make a beautiful dress for her and we had a small party where my friends got gifts like chocolates, small shoes , jewellery for the doll. I remember carrying her along with me after getting married, but in time it naturally had to be discarded. It sure is a nostalgic feeling.
Coming to today's dish. The search for Manipur led me to a few vegetarian dishes, and I tried one of their salads. Somehow no one liked it, as it lacked flavors. The salad had to be finished with powdered dried fish! I spoke to my parlour girls who are Manipuri, but I had no luck with vegetarian dishes. My search ended when I visited the Satvik Fair held in Ahmedabad. We had a stall of Manipuri students.They gave me the option of two three dishes,one being Ooti,which was on my list.Rest of the dishes required ingredients which are impossible to get here.They have a variety of mushrooms that they eat. These guys had sampled a few dishes, and even sold them. I tasted the dishes but felt we need to acquire taste. The Chak - Hao kheer was something I really liked, the purple color looked unique and the taste was as good as our kheer. I requested these students to give me some raw rice, unfortunately they could give me just about 1/4 cup.Coming to black rice! what is black rice?
Black rice is an excellent source of fibre, amino acids, minerals, vitamins, and antioxidants. Its colour changes to dramatic purple when cooked, so it is also known as “Purple Rice”. The purple color is due to the anthocyanins present in the rice which act as antioxidants. In China and some South-East Asian countries, it is commonly known as “Forbidden Rice”, as it was reserved exclusively for royalty in ancient China.
Coming to the recipe....
1/4 cup Black rice
125 ml milk ( full fat)
1/4 tsp Cardamon powder
Sugar to taste
Rinse the rice and soak for about 5-6 hours.
Drain the rice and transfer to a pot .
Cook on very slow fire making sure to stir it once in a while.
Cook till the rice is done, you could add more milk, if the rice absorbs this milk.
Adjust the milk according to the consistency of the kheer that you require.
Add sugar , raisins and cardamon powder.
Serve hot or cold.
The rice has a sweet nutty flavor and you actually do not need any nuts, though I added some raisins.
Chak-Hao kheer is served during all festivals and celebrations.
Here are some of the pics that I captured at the Manipuri stall at the Satvik Fair.
Jelly Ear ..this is a variety of mushroom, shaped like an ear!!
a dish made from jelly ear!!
The Chak-hao kheer and Black rice
Paknam is a dish made with another variety of mushrooms , where turmeric leaves are used
Thats the big red hot chilly that is a speciality of East ern India.
Manipuri students who put their stall.
All the dishes made by the Manipuri students had ingredients which are not easily available, they had called for these ingredients from Manipur.I have pics of two recipes and you can see that we have not even heard of these ingredients!