Best Traditional Millet Recipes of the Tribals of Koraput and their Perception

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Traditional Millet Recipes in Koraput:

                                                        Odisha tribals possess knowledge of making different types of traditional millet recipes from finger millets for ages. In Odisha Millet Mission, Food festivals were conducted by DHAN Foundation in Dasamantpur Block of Koraput, where the tribal come out with the hidden talent of making food items with Finger Millet. Few feel shy, as they don’t want that someone should know their food items. To encourage them some prizes were kept for the best recipe.

(Figure: Distribution of prize to the first awardee for best recipe)
                                        Information related to the traditional millet recipe out of finger millet was collected from 100 sample households. It was seen that most of them consumed one recipe most about 38 percent that is Jau (Finger Millet mixed with warm water). About 35 percent of household samples consumed Jau, Mudde & Tampa (1Rice:2Ragi flour). Few consumed Pitha occasionally. It was interesting to note that they also consumed other items like Ragi in between Jackfruit leaf (Water+Ragi Flour+Salt+Jaggery+Chilli). Cakes are made by wrapping ragi flour in maize husks or banana leaves and then roasted.

                       (Figure: Consumption of traditional local recipe by the sample households)

Photos of Tribal’s Traditional Millet Recipes:

Mandia Anda (Ragi flour with broken Rice)
Mandia Tampa (Ragi flour with broken rice and warm water)


Mandia Roti (Ragi flour roti)
Mandia Pitha (Ragi flour in between Banana Leaves)
Mandia Kandul Raav (Ragi flour with Whole Arhar dal with some masala)


Mandia Sukua Raav (Ragi with dried fish and masala)

Consumption of Finger Millet:

                                             This section is based on the facts and figures collected through the survey in addition to that through observation and discussion with people at the village level. It focuses on consumption-related indicators such as frequency and time of consumption, the quantity of consumption, and reasons for consumption.

Frequency and time of finger millet consumption: (100 respondents)

Information related to frequency and quantity of finger millet consumption is available for 100 sample households. All households had reported having consumed finger millet last year. Around 90 percent of them consumed it on a daily basis. Around 10 percent of households consumed it occasionally. To understand the time and quantity of consumption of the sample households, the quantity was taken in terms of the number of glasses, and the time was taken in the morning, afternoon, evening, and night.
It was observed that 41 percent of sample households had taken two glasses and 49 percent took 3 glasses in the morning. The rest details of consumption are in the figure below. So it is understood that most of the sample households take ragi during morning and afternoon time and few during night time.

But it was also observed that the quantity intake increases during the summer season and less or negligible during rainy days.

(Figure: Ragi consumption pattern on terms frequency, time and quantity)

Perception of Finger Millet Consumption: (100 respondents)

                      To understand the reasons for the consumption of Finger Millet from the 100 households, a ranking system of the reasons was taken into consideration. The reasons were:
1.More energetic than other food
2.Healthy food
3.Highly nutritious
4.Easy to digest
5.Controls blood sugar.
It is understood from the figure below that most of the household sample consumed finger millet as it gives more energy than other food and the least were unaware of the control of blood sugar.


(Figure: Ranking of perception on the finger millet consumption)
Millets are the storehouse of nutrients as they contain protein, fiber as well as micro-nutrients such as beta carotene, iron, and calcium. Ragi containing the highest amount of calcium i.e. 344 mg in 100 grams of Ragi. No doubt, the consumption of ragi is playing a good role to address malnutrition in tribals.
Odisha Millet Mission
Odisha Millet Mission, taking the lead role to provide ragi in the Public Distribution System in Odisha at just Rs.1/kg. In the year 2019-20, around one lakh quintals and 2 lakh quintals in 2020-21 have been procured from the farmers of Odisha which will surely add momentum to address the consumption, malnutrition, and Nutritional Security.
(Figure: Farmer showing his local Finger Millet recipe)


Traditional millet recipes of tribals play an important role to address malnutrition in Koraput. But my concern is that children of tribals must be made more aware of the nutritional aspects of millets and introducing millets in the mid-day will be a wonderful step. Odisha Millet Mission has taken the step and getting an overwhelming response for this initiative.

Author: Tapas Chandra Roy, Certified Farm Advisor on Millets



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4 thoughts on “Best Traditional Millet Recipes of the Tribals of Koraput and their Perception”

  1. It’s a nice article with lots of information on Millet cases traditional recepies. In fact MSSRF also had a study on culinary food practices of tribal people of Koraput. It’s really very interesting.
    Thanks a lot for bringing this to forefront.


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