Arunachal Pradesh reveals its traditional drink’s recipe, ‘Chhang’!


Chhang is most important and indespensable rice and millet based local beer prepared and consumed by the natives of mechuka. It quenches thirst, gives energy and provides nutrition.

Chhang signifies a gesture of welcome, it is consumed by any age group and at any time.

Firstly before anything maintaining cleanliness is necessary during the overall process of preaparing Chhang.

In Mechuka, almost every family has a chest in their home exclusively for fermenting millet or rice for making chhang. Usually, the complete fermentation process takes about 15-20 days.

The room where the fermentation is done is always kept neat and clean.

For making the beer, the millet is boiled and then spread on to the very clean floor to cool. Dry yeast (locally called "oppop") is mixed with this millet,"

About three-four kilos of millet is required for making a litre of beer.
The yeast, too, is made by mixing millet powder and chhang. "Oppop is the yeast used in the beer-making process. Making oppop is similar to making curd by using the curd residue in milk. Here we use the chhang residue and mix it with millet powder.

Getting the right temperature is crucial while mixing the oppop with the boiled millet. "If the millet is too hot and the yeast is added, it will sour the brew. If the millet is too cold, it will take longer to ferment.
The mixture is kept in a thoroughly washed and dried container with a lid for fermentation.
"Leave it for 15-20 days in a warm place. Don't open the lid in the meantime. When we start to smell the fermentation strongly, it would be ready.
Water should be added depending on whether one wants to make the chhang strong or weak.
Though the alcohol content is low, but it produces an intense feeling of warmth.
Chhang is considered to be the best option for those locals who cannot afford a branded alcohol, and can manufacture it a per their tastebuds.
Generally, a bottle of chhang is sold for Rs 40.
Consuming chhang to endure temperatures which go well below freezing in winter is in line with the food habit of taking dry, roasted and boiled pork, chicken, squirrel, birds from local forests.

Sources: The Indian EXPRESS