Hmarchate – Small Chilli

Small Chilli, Hmarchate, Hmarcha, Chilli, Pungent Smell, Red Chilli, Hilly Forests, Kitchen Garden, Household Consumption, Traditional Dishes, Hmar Families, Hmarchadeng, Chilli Chutney, Mirchi

Small Chilli, called ‘Hmarchate’ in Hmar (HmarchaChilli; Te – Small), are about 1 inches long. They taste hot and has a highly pungent smell. When ripen, they either turn red or yellow. The ripe red chilli are often dried in the sun.

Small Chilli are indigenously grown in the hilly forests or in the kitchen garden for household consumption. The Hmars’ love for chilli is widely known. They add chilli, usually more than their neibouring communities, to most of their traditional dishes. For majority Hmar families, a meal is not complete without a Hmarchadeng or Chilli Chutney.

Contrary to some assumption, the terms ‘Hmar’ and ‘Hmarcha’ (chilli) are not related. Instead, ‘Hmarcha’ is a corrupted term for ‘Mirchi’ in Hindi.

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