Arunachal Pradesh is hidden from the world in such a way that its cultural heritage and cuisine have been preserved for centuries. Owing to its geographic location and political situation, travellers should book an Arunachal Pradesh tour package with a well-trusted travel company. Once you enter this mesmerizing north-eastern state, trying out local delicacies should be on your bucket list! Here are 20 of the most authentic food items in Arunachal Pradesh you need to try out on your next vacation:
1. Pika Pila
A traditional food item of Arunachal Pradesh that you will find in every household and restaurant is the Pika Pila. It is believed that the Apatani tribe created this pickle that goes well with rice, curries, dried fish, etc. Made from pig fat and bamboo sheets, Pika Pila is among the most popular dishes of Arunachal Pradesh that you need to try on your next trip.
The cuisine of Arunachal Pradesh is so unique that your palette will be in for a surprise! Lukter is a beef-based dish that will blow your mind on the very first bite. It is the ideal meal for a cold winter evening in Tawang when this roasted beef dish will keep you warm and cosy.
Arunachal Pradesh has vegetarian dishes that are known to have a fermented flavour from soybeans. Pehak is enjoyed with steamed rice which helps in highlighting the savoury taste of this dish. Once you try out Pehak at a local eatery in Tawang, West Kameng, or any other region, there is no going back!
4. Chura Sabzi
One of the most heart-warming food items in Arunachal Pradesh is the Chura Sabzi. It is a mélange of vegetables and yak milk cheese. The delicate flavour of this Arunachali delicacy is mouth-watering enough to have at least a bowlful with some freshly steamed rice.
5. Wungwut Ngam
Next up on the list of famous food items in Arunachal Pradesh is Wungwut Ngam. This delicacy is prepared with chicken, rice powder, and indigenous spices. Available at street-food joints and restaurants, this is the perfect dish to devour after exploring the best places to visit in Arunachal Pradesh.
Pasa is one of the most traditional food items in Arunachal Pradesh that the locals are still very fond of. It is a raw fish delight that soldiers used to prepare during wartime without lighting a fire. The historical significance of this spicy dish has made a special place in the hearts of Arunachali tribes. So, the next time you are travelling to this state, Pasa should be on your must-try-food list!
The love for bamboo shoots in Arunachal Pradesh is not hidden. In fact, you can find a number of delicacies that have these sprouts bringing a distinct flavour and spice. Papuk is a delicious Arunachali appetizer prepared with fermented bamboo shoots, chicken, banana flowers, and red chilis.
8. Koat Pitha
A famous sweet food item in Arunachal Pradesh is the Koat Pitha which is a hit among kids, adults, and the elderly alike. You will find several stalls in Tawang, Itanagar, and other areas selling Koat Pitha at dirt-cheap prices. Bananas, jaggery, and flour are mixed and fried to perfection. So, what’s not to love?!
Iite happens to be one of the simplest dishes of Arunachal Pradesh that will provide comfort to your travelling tummy! This is basically a rice cake that is either baked or fried to consume with vegetables, dal or a meat-based curry. Due to its versatility, Lite is preferred by tourists from all over the world in all their meals!
Although the cuisine of Arunachal Pradesh has evolved over the years, there are some traditions that are still being practised. Ngatok is one such dish cooked in the same style followed by people a century ago. Marinated fish pieces are wrapped in leaves and then cooked in a stone pot along with red chilis, tomatoes, and spices. Its paring is done with steamed rice or Dung Po.
Momos are known as the most famous food item not only in Arunachal Pradesh but across India. Our obsession with these wheat flour dumplings is not going to go away anytime soon, so you might as well make the most of it! In this state, you will find unique preparations of momos with yak meat, beef, vegetables, and many other ingredients. Make sure to stuff your face with any many Himalayan momos as you can!
12. Mala Roti
A food item that you can enjoy on the go in Arunachal Pradesh is the Mala Roti. It is a sweet bread shaped like a ring with flavours of jaggery, cloves, and cardamom oozing out in every bite. You can get a bunch of Mala Rotis packed while going on a trek or a picnic and enjoy them en route.
13. Nou Kai Noo Som
You will find a few versions of this dish in different parts of Arunachal Pradesh. This famous food item is prepared with chicken stew, bamboo shoots, and spices by the tribals. On the other hand, people settled in the hilly region prefer boiling their meat with basic spices. Both versions are delicious in their own right, so do try them out.
If you think that matar chaat is not adored in the North East then you are absolutely wrong! Guguni is one of the most tempting street-food dishes in Arunachal Pradesh. The preparation is similar to the typical matar chaat you get in Calcutta with some tweaks done to make it a part of the Arunachalese cuisine.
This all-in-one meal is beloved by Himalayan people across the North East. Every state in this part of India has its own version of Thukpa depending on the kinds of meats and vegetables that are easily available. This Tibetan food item in Arunachal Pradesh is prepared with noodles, vegetables, stock, and meats.
Another noodle-based dish that is celebrated by the locals is Puta. Made with buckwheat noodles, fermented soybeans, spring onions, chives, chilis, and garlic, this one’s a no-brainer. You can enjoy it with some Apong or Apo, an alcoholic drink made of fermented rice.
By now, you must have understood the love for fermented foods in Arunachal Pradesh. The reason behind fermenting several food items is that it helps in long-term preservation and taste enhancement. Kharzi is yet another Arunachali delicacy made of fermented cheese, rice, spring onions, carrots, chilis, and several other ingredients. There are many styles of cooking Kharzi across this state, but if you really wish to try the authentic version, then you should visit a Monpa tribe family.
Byak is a chutney or side dish that is enjoyed with dal-bhaat (dal and rice) on a daily basis. It is prepared using Thai eggplant that is either roasted or boiled. It is then mixed with ginger, red chilis, and other herbs to give a tangy flavour.
A sweet dish that will make your heart sing and dance in joy is the Bresi. Highly popular during festivals, it is made of rice, dried fruits, and sugar with melted butter drizzled on top. You can smell the divine fragrance of Bresi in the streets of Itanagar, Tawang, etc., during Diwali and other regional festivities.
20. Po Cha
The love for butter tea among the Himalayan folks is so strong that every state has its own variation. Arunachal Pradesh’s Po Cha is prepared by boiling black tea first and then pouring milk on top for further brewing. The yak milk butter is added on top with some salt to give you a divine hot beverage that will make your world go round!
With so many delicacies to savour in Arunachal Pradesh, procrastinating anymore is out of the question. Book your tickets and visit this heavenly state now!