Indigenous foods of Himachal Pradesh


The traditional fermented foods and beverages form important constituents of staple diet of the people belonging to the tribal belts of Lahaul and Spiti, Kinnaur, Chamba and rural area of Kullu, Shimla, Mandi and Kangra districts of Himachal Pradesh. Fermented milk dahi is a universal fermented product prepared and consumed in Northern India, similar to the people elsewhere in the world. Another fermented product Lassi is a common fermented product of rural India and Northern India is not an exception.

Production of fermented foods such as wine, beer, bread, yoghurt, cheese and pickles by fermentation constitutes most ancient technologies developed by man to improve the quality and storage life of some food materials from time immemorial. The art of fermentation practiced by common man continued inspite of scientific and technological revolution but largely remained confined to home scale, rural and tribal areas due to high cost of inaccessibility of the industry-made products in remote areas, taste of the people for the traditional fermented products and finally, their socio-cultural linkages with such products. The traditional fermented foods and beverages form important constituents of staple diet of the people belonging to the tribal belts of Lahaul and Spiti, Kinnaur, Chamba and rural area of Kullu, Shimla, Mandi and Kangra districts of Himachal Pradesh.
Fermented milk dahi is a universal fermented product prepared and consumed in Northern India, similar to the people elsewhere in the world. Another fermented product Lassi is a common fermented product of rural India and Northern India is not an exception. Himachal Pradesh has several products common with Northern India, may be with some modifications depending upon the availability of raw material and liking of the consumers. At the same time there are several fermented products which are unique to Himalayan region while others are specific to Himachal Pradesh especially to Tribal areas. In Table 1, some of the products are listed. Different regions of Himachal Pradesh are known for their typical products like Angoori of Kinnaur district, while Chhang is known throughout the Himalayan region. Many of the fermented products are well known as house-hold items while a few are prepared at cottage scale. Industrialization of these products has not taken place to any great extent, though some of these products have already found a place in the menu of several restaurants and hotels.
Mostly these foods are cereal-based (wheat/barley/buckwheat ragi) but some legume (black gram) and milk-based fermented foods are also common. Some of the products like Bhaturu, Siddu, Chilra, Marchu, Manna, Dosha, Pinni/Bagpinni, Seera, etc. are unique to Himachal Pradesh. A large variety of fermented foods is prepared either daily, during special occasions or for consumption during journey. Traditional starter cultures like 'Malera' and Treh' are used as inocula in making these fermented foods. However, the natural fermentation (without the addition of inoculum, as microorganisms present in the raw materials carry out fermentation) is used in the production of Seera, Sepubari, Bohre etc.

Table 1: Some of the traditional fermented foods of Himachal Pradesh.

Aska-Rice -flour Lahaul
Bari- Black gram- Kullu, Kangra, Mandi, Bilaspur
Bedvin roti- Wheat floor, opium seeds, linseeds- Kullu, Kangra, Mandi, Chamba, Shimla
Bhaturu -Wheat flour- Kullu, Kangra, Mandi, Chamba, Shimla
Borhe- Black gram- Spiti
Babru/ Suhala -Wheet Flour- Kullu, Kangra, Mandi
Chilra (Lwar)- Rice/Wheat/Buck-wheat/ Barley -Lahaul, Kangra
Dosha -Wheat flour- Lahaul
Gulgule- Wheat flour -Kullu, kangra, Mandi, Chamba, Spiti
Jute -Buck Wheat flour- Kinnour
Khoblu- Wheet Flour, butter milk, Lassi Mandi, Suket
Manna- Wheat flour -Lahaul
Marchu- Wheat flour -Lahaul
Pakk- Barley, butter and lassi -Kullu, Kangra, Mandi, Bilaspur
Pinni/Bagpinni- Barley flour -Kullu, Kangra, Mandi, Chamba and Shimla
Seera/ Kheera- Wheat grains -Kullu, Kangra, Mandi, Chamba, , Spiti
Sepubari- Black gram -Kullu, Kangra, Mandi, Bilaspur
Siddu -Wheat flour -Kullu, Kangra, shimla
Thuktal -Barley- Bilaspur


Reference: www.sonusometime.blogspot.com


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