Friday, 13 June 2014

Purple rice pudding

In my home town (Imphal, Manipur), not many people are fond of sweets. One of my colleagues in Delhi asked me once "What are the signature sweets of Manipur?" And I didn't have the answer. I didn't know. Well, there is kabok (something like sweet crunchy balls made of rice) and chini heiganl (jaggery). I rarely had sweets at home. When I miss home, I don't think of kabok or heingal. The things that come to my mind are ngari (fermented fish) and soibum (bamboo shoots).
At home, almost every dish is about chilli, fish (fresh or fermented), bamboo shoots, stews, garnished with so many variety of herbs, pork and beef for the younger generations.

But there is one gem that comes to my mind when I think of something sweet from home that I loved and still love...dark, rare, and expensive...the PURPLE RICE!
Some say it's black...but to my eyes they are purple, dark purple...and back home, it's lovingly called chakhao. The best way to have purple rice is to make pudding out of it.
The recipe is very very simple. Wash only once before cooking. Too many wash and the purple rice will lose its aroma and nutrients. I never use exact measurements to cook it. It is cooked the same as rice is cooked. But instead of water, milk is used. You can vary the amount of milk depending on how you want the pudding to be...runny or thick. Add sugar to your taste and nuts for garnishing. Although it tastes divine as it is without any garnish.

Another way of having it is my mom's way. She cooks the purple rice in plain water. And devours it with chuhi (thickened sugarcane juice).

Oh yes, plainly cooked purple rice is also divine as it is...maybe it's because of the distinctively delicious aroma it has...out of this world!
#purplericepudding #chakhao #cuisinesofmanipur

#chakhao #cuisinesof manipur

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