Arunachal Pradesh is considered one of the richest botanical regions in India, where people depend much on shifting cultivation and forest based food products for their food and nutritional security. Monpa tribe consumes a range of solid, semi-fermented, fermented, boiled and process food apart from the rich and medicinally important beverages prepared from indigenous maize, barley, finger millet and rice varieties. A diverse knowledge system exists among Monpa women to prepare the daily meal, which is gathered by various trial and error methods over a period of time.
They prepare something called Khapse and Gasinpipi with amarnath flour. The grains are first dried, roasted and made into a flour. The flour kneaded with warm water and made into a 8-shaped rolls and deep fried in mustard oil. This khapse is stored in bamboo container for a year. The same flour is kneaded and rolled into a chapathi and cut into star shape, partially dried in bamboo mat, these are then roasted without oil and called as gasinpipi.
Sadly the present generation of Monpa are slowly forgetting their traditional food, thanks to modernisation and introduction of commercially processed food.
- Mix Warm water, milk, sugar and oil together. Take the flour in a big bowl, add the liquid little by little and start making a soft pilable dough.Let the dough rest for 10 minutes.
- Divide the dough into 3 balls. Dust the rolling surface with flour, roll out each ball ¼ inch thickness.
- Cut the dough into strips and roll each strip into a rope and shape it as shown. This shape of khapse is called buri. Repeat the same with the rest of the dough.Please follow the video for the shapes.
- Heat oil in a kadai/pan for frying. Keep the flame in medium. This is very important. Coz the fritters browns pretty fast, so if the flame is high you will end up with soft fritters.
- Keep the flame medium, Deep fry the fritters in batches, do not crowd the pan.
- Once they are fried well, the sizzling of oil will cease, then take the fritters out of the oil and drain them well on a kitchen towel. While serving, dust the fritters with powdered sugar and serve. Store the khapse in air-tight container.
- Both my hubby and my lil one enjoyed them well, the elder one was a bit hesistant to try because of the unique taste/flavor of amarnath flour.