Monica Gi Chakhum & Wari Watai – Manipuri and other Food

“Chakhum” in manipuri/meiteilon means kitchen, the name a tribute to Manipur, my native place.  “Wari Watai” in manipuri/meiteilon means chit chat.

This is an attempt to capture my journey of learning cooking, trying out food and hence will contain my fav. recipes/food from all different places I have been. I will be introducing and talking about Manipuri food/vegetables too. Also I will be chit chatting on topics which are of interest to me.

This will help me to organise on the recipes I love. These are my favourite collections from others recipe and some my own (which have been discovered by fluke and will be very less in numbers;). Cooking so far has been hit & trial and I depend heavily strictly on the recipe and cannot cook without my recipe book/printout in front of me… If It’s a lucky day, the food turns out to be awesome 🙂 but there are days where the whole food goes to the thrash :(.

Thanks to all the food blogger from whom I get most of my recipes & aspiration to tray & cook and I don’t take credit for it 😉 . For dishes I want to try/like, I generally put a link of the original recipe and also paste the recipe (I do this because I have had cases where the link doesn’t work or blogger deleted content) content in my blog (with/without changes to suit my taste) and I would have given a comment to the original recipe owner. But in any case, if anyone has a problem in me doing this, please let me know, I will put just the link in my collection.

Thanks to friends/strangers who have shared related pictures captured in this blog.  If you want to share a picture in my blog, please contact me and I will be happy to upload it.

And a big big thanks to all my blog readers for your continuous comments which motivates me even more to continue blogging.

Picture of my favourite “Manipuri Ushop Mathen”.


73 responses to “Monica Gi Chakhum & Wari Watai – Manipuri and other Food

  1. Hi Monica,

    I am so happy to see the Unniappam’s recipes, one of my husbands favourite. I have taken the recipe which i will try this thursday being a holiday. I will tell u how well it came out.
    I cook some kerala dishes which everyone likes it and one of the famous one is Parippu Pradhaman. I will send you the recipe if you have not tried bofore.
    Thank you so much for recipe.

  2. Oh my gosh! What a spread. Are those all Manipuri dishes? Is that a special festival meal? Never made any manipuri dishes. I had quite a few Manipuri classmates at nursing school. Hoping to learn more Manipuri dishes from you.

  3. Hey…awesome job!!! with all the recipes….u make me miss home food real bad….But u have missed one key dish…the singju…Plz a meitei without singju is like a trouser without zip…..we just ain’t gonna be we

  4. HI
    Monica it’s been lovely to tell u that u have done a great job in making a collection of manipuri dishes.Hope u do well in different different collection’s.May god be with u always
    and i really appreciate your good work.

    Thanks and u take care.

  5. Dear Monica,

    It is really fasinating to see this all manipuri dishes available in net.As i am far from home and not knowing how to cook ( A man ), i really and from heart appreciate you…….

    take care and dont forget to update you list..


  6. Dear Monica,
    Its really nice to see ur website full of manipuri dish… Try to add some more manipuri dish like chagempomba, utti, paknam ..etcc.. etc.. and yes i want to learn how to make pork pickle.. if u have the recipe then please share it with me.. All the best..


  7. Hi Monica,
    I left manipur about 30 years ago but still my mouth waters when I think of ‘Irongba’ spelling may not be right but you have guessed its boiled veg mixed with raw onion and green chilies and added heethal, the stinky fish…please can you give me the right recepies.

  8. Hi Monica,
    I left manipur about 30 years ago but still my mouth waters when I think of ‘Irongba’ spelling may not be right but you have guessed its boiled veg mixed with raw onion and green chilies and added heethal, the stinky fish…please can you give me the right recepies.

  9. i m extremely happy to see the dishes of manipur in the net. Actually i am the student of Master in tourism administration and its my duty to develop the tourist places in manipur. So food is the important thing as in my mmind and as i was far from my home i have not tasted “pakora” since six month. Our food somewhat different from others.
    Bijen Thokchom.


  11. hey monica,
    i wanna thank u for all the dishes u posted..but ya i want soem help from u…i wanna knw if there is anything called NAARY/NAARRI…in manipur..actually im not an maniputi but ya got married to an manipuri…even i wanna give her some surprise by making manipur dishes for her…can u plz help me out…

  12. hi monica
    you really made me miss home ve done a great job. Hope this site will help some of my friends who are anxious to know more of our manipuri dishes. wish you luck. bye


  13. What a brilliant and innovative idea of yours lol. i am quite flaterred with the way you have popularised typical meitei dishes over the net.

    Regards to your innovative action and keep up the same.

  14. hai monica
    nice to see some1 doing a gr8 thing to show our beautiful culture.aeidi henjang thongba se yamna haite aduna i really admired u… best wishes for u.. n thank u so much ..

  15. Hi Monica
    It’s great seeing the mouth watering manipuri dishes.Can you please post the recipe for Singju, manipuri dal and Iromba without Nagri or any other alternative-as this lovely fish is not available in NewZealand(country where I live)
    Can you post is sooooon please as I am just waiting and longing to prepare it!

  16. hello,
    u can get yonchak maru in hong kong market
    in frozen section it is called SATOR it will be in small plastic bag but only the green seed.

  17. Hi,

    Do u have the recipe for Eron ba. I used to love it. If possible, could u pliz mail it to me. I have not eaten it since I left Imphal in 1984.


  18. i really dont know what to say its 5.40 in the morning and am still trying to sleep (unsuccessfully) and also remembering that had i been home i will probably be in the “chakhum” making tea. back home i wasn’t much of a foodie and really didnt appreciate Meitei cusine but now… wow my mouth watered at those usop mathens and the yongchak sungju … great … its good to see my yenjhang mathensing after so long

  19. hi
    Yes it’s true that u had done a really great job for manipuris and for all the people who are really interested in Manipuri Foodies.So that every manipuris living in nook and corner of the whole world can have the taste of typical manipuri dishes.
    take care buddy.

  20. Hii,

    This is really Gud stuff. I really appreciate it and Kudos to u!! Really missing all the home foods now…. Will try it out alll next time I go home!! Keep up the good work!!


  21. thank you very much for all the recipes.can u plz send me manipuri utti recipe and fish recipe (mash). you really make me feel like manipur here in australia. thanks

  22. Thank you very much for all the recipes. Can u plz send me Manipuri utti recipe and fish recipe (mash). You really make me feel like Manipur here in Australia. thanks

  23. i ‘m glad to find these kinda stuffs… i ‘ve a passion of cooking, & i would be glad if u can share me some “authentic meitei enshaag mathel”… viz., ooti asungba, mung-gun ooti, chgem-pomba…
    hats off to u..

  24. I really appriciate ur work. I ‘ve been missing my homely food made by my mum and after visiting ur website i feel like m in my hometown. But i will be more thankfull if u can give in details of each curry with photo n explain of making and the ingridents for it will help other to understand more and can make it. By the way its make me more yearn to have and taste all that utsav mathel.

  25. Hi Monica, im happto find all this great stuffs that you have made. East or West, Manipuri dish is the best! Keep it up.

  26. I am so happy to see all those manipuri food.Its been such a long time I didn’t have all this kind of food. My mouth water yummy……Whenever I want to have manipuri food I always visit this site….Keep up the good work…..

  27. This picture is great, thats why whenever i got vacation i start looking for it. And luck was also with me. when i visit my friends home “mangani chakkouba” was going on and they ask me to have it. May be i had four times in my vacation. i miss it, thanks monica and you have really a good collection. 🙂

  28. hey monica,kudos to ur work..wen i see al dis dishes pics my mouth s fill wit watery.nyway plz put d receipe for making kheer in manipuri style …

  29. hi ! monica u make me feel really at home.yap .for 4 year i didn’t eat any manipuri food. biy on seeing urs photo i make myself satisfied.u make us proud in front of this world….thnx

  30. hi che che …
    m graduating this year from ihm (institute of hotel management)…i got plans to open meitei cuisine restaura in delhi….m gonna need yur help…great work sis…keep it up \m/

    • To Monica,

      What a wonderful site. I have so many appreciative comments, that I cannot write them all. So you will have to understand them from my heart, if I only say, a very heartfelt THANK YOU & GOD BLESS ALWAYS.

      To JOE & SAROJA SINGAM, re;Ngari,

      It would be very useful if people like, some with F& B,training, were to experiment with producing Ngari with some of the different types of fishes found in other parts of India. Ngari is freshwater small river fish of good quality given a controlled ferment+pickling in salt under controlled conditions that converts some of the proteins to amino acids to flavor compounds. The Lao, the Issaan, the Cambodians and so many southeast Asian cultures produce exceptional ngari from doens of types of fish and shellfish. So there is no reason to confine this great product to just one fish, is there? In fact, in parts of north-eastern Bangladesh, a very similar fermented product is prepared in taro leaves with a variety of small fish.

      In Delhi itself, I would go for Banshpata, the silvery Tengra, but not the
      dark species, for Glossogobius, and quite a few others, and experiment with the controlled salt fermentation, using equipment like temperature
      controlled sytems to produce a quality product. You will be surprised at what you will get. I am a biochemist, and you will find many others very
      willing to work with you. Although many may eat pork or sausage,
      fermented sausage similar to the northern Thai style, but with the flavors of Manipur, should also be considered. They are easy to make, and will have a good market. Please think about value-added products to give Manipur greater exposure and income opportunities. We are ready to be of service, without any obligations, whatsoever.

  31. dearest che monica,

    i was just typing manipuri food n ur site popped up.i was so excited that i woke up my room mate,sofia n showed her those mouth-watering pictures.we r students here in delhi n we dont get to eat such food anymore.even if we have brought ngari from home,its always potatoes n tomatoes kangsoi that we cook..i really miss all those delicious food n now we have developed an affinity with u cheche…we want to see u..y dont u put a picture of u cooking these wonderful dishes?

    love you,love your recipes,

  32. Man,
    You are great.
    This is so breathe taking pictures.
    Can you please Upload, some more pictures on
    Manipuri Foods.

    Please .Please .Please

    Your Handsomely

  33. m damn hungry to see all those manipuri henshang great job,but i like to c ma fav dish ooti asangba n chagem pomba,if u hav any nice pic of those dishes,plz put up.

  34. Hi everyone! Can anyone tell me where can I buy the lotus seeds. I had eromba in Imphal and they put lotus seeds. I miss manipuri cusine.:(

    Miss eating meal in Mao. yum!

    • I think you mean Thangjing, that is not actually lotus seed, lotus seeds are Thamchet maru, apart from Manipur you will find thamchet in Assam, North Bengal and abundance in east Bihar (Maithily Region) It is a big industry in this area, however you will not get the raw thangjing as you get in Maniur, what they do they remove the thangjing seeds and also clean them and thereafter they bake and roast to make ‘Kabok’. This is being sold every where in our country by the name “Makhana”. If you are out side Manipur you can buy Makahana from any good ration shop and put them in your preparation, you will not get the actual taste of Thangjing being cooked in Manipur but it will satisfy your taste buds to some extents.

  35. Hi this is malemn,its really nice to see ur site and im a food lover ……..i like to see more update from you in future…..

  36. i was really bored having nothing to do this evening so i just thought of looking up to my old mails and found that one of my friend had mentioned about wari watai days back which i was not very much interested in reading or …….whatever. but today when i start reading it i find it so good looking at those delicious and mouth watering home food. i really missed it. and yes u are doing a great job

  37. Hey Monica,

    I was just waiting for lunch break in the office so meanwhile thought of googling about our lovely Manipur, then I got to see ur chakshang mathel which increase my appetite. I really appreciate your hardwork. Hats off to you…..

  38. Hi Monica,
    This is the first time I have seen Manipuri food and the presentation you put.It is marvelous!Definetly I’ll try your recipes and pls.can you tell how u made those bowls out of leaves?I’ll appreciate this.

  39. hi… its really gr8 to c ur site..can u please tell me the ingredient of bori n how to make it….i really want to eat bori with mustard leave…

  40. Hi Monica,

    Its been 5 years now where i have not seen dis kinda of dishes,sorry of myself that I have not taste all dis food stuff for long ago,thanks for the picture wis you have uploaded.

  41. very very good job, i really appreciate ur work …can you please give me the recipe of ooty asangba…

  42. hey,love to see ur blog!!there are lots of manipuri dishes beside ooti and iromba.why dont u tell us how to make pakora dish and maduson or whatever its name(sorry if i misplet it wrongly).i love to know its recipe so that i can try it at home.i miss all the usop dishes.

  43. che monica,
    i love manipuri dishes, please tell one thing how to make meitei bori now i m in outside, i love very much but here his not getting please tell me something how to make bori??? if u suggest me i m very very thanks to you…
    thanks and regards…

  44. hi monica i really feel good to see ur blog.As m far from home and havnt went there for the past 2 years. can u please send me the recipes for uti and pakoda .i really miss all the dishes and my mouth starts watering if i think of these delicious dishes .

  45. Pingback: The Manipuri Blogs & Websites Directory ¶ The Manipuri Blogs & Websites Directory·

  46. I wish that meitie cooking programme should be telecast in TLC so the all around the world people can know about us and as well as our food and tradition

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