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Alcoholic Rice Beverages

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The Karbis have an age old tradition of preparing Hor Alank (rice beer) by fermenting cooked rice with locally prepared yeast culture called Thap and distilling the alcohol called Hor Arak from the beer. Thap is traditionally prepared from leaves of Croton joufra Roxb. and uncooked rice. Highly concentrated alcohol in small quantities has been used among rural masses to cure dysentery, pharyngitis and cholera; while hor alank is used as preservative and for flavouring dried fish (manthu). The paper describes the indigenous method of preparing the beverage, various substitutes and adulterants used for the preparation of thap and its uses. The traditional Still called Bhot as well as improved Still have also been described in detail.
Article
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The main objective of this article is to document and represent the medicinal herb used for the preparation of Apong by the Mising tribal community. North-East India is inhabited by many indigenous tribes and as a part of their socio-cultural life, most of these tribes prepare their own household liquors, mostly using rice grains as the substrate. Each of the tribes also prepares their own unique starter cultures to carry out fermentation, and each type is a mixture of different parts of various plant species. There are 39 plants documented here which possess distinct medicinal values. The paper reflects the rich ethno medicinal values of the herbs. The informations are collected by the active field survey in three villages of Sibsagar district in Assam, and through the available local literature. This review will help to researchers and scholars to investigate the proper bio-molecules and its' accessible pharmacological responses. The further scrutiny and evaluation of the safety parameters of each component of the herb used in Apong may be investigate to develop a pharmacologically potent lead molecule.
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The study of ethnobotany relating to any tribe is in itself a very intricate or convoluted process. The Northeastern part of India is well known for production of household liquors, which is associated with the regions rich indigenous knowledge system. The paper documents the traditional knowledge for the preparation of starter cultures used by the indigenous tribes through structured questionnaires in consultations with a few ethnic tribes residing in isolated pockets of Northeast India. The study revealed that the methods for production of household liquors among the different tribes vary, as all of them follow their own indigenous protocols, where they use different plants during the preparation of starter culture although the substrate employed as the source of carbon is common. The study thus highlights the potentials of the ethnobotanical research and the need for documentation of traditional knowledge pertaining to the production of alcohol.
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Methodology of rice beer preparation and various plant materials used in starter culture preparation by some tribal communities of North-East India: A survey Abstract: North-East India is inhabited by many indigenous tribes and as a part of their socio-cultural life most of these tribes prepare their own local brew, mostly using rice grains as the substrate. In addition each of the tribes also prepares their own unique starter cultures to carry out fermentation, and each type is a mixture of different parts of various plant species. These starter cultures in the form of cakes can be stored up to several months. The fermentation is usually carried out in earthen pots at room temperature and takes about 5-7 days for completion of the whole process of preparation. The authors visited some of the rural areas where rice beer is predominantly prepared and the process of preparation was observed and documented. The methodologies followed by the Bodo, Karbi, Ahom, Mising, Deori, Dimasa Kachari and Angami tribes of North-East India have been reported in this article. The plant species used for starter cake preparation were collected from the places visited and their taxonomical identification was carried out. This article also reflects some of the expertise of the ethnic people in maintenance of suitable conditions for microbial activities required for rice beer preparation.
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Sujen, a popular local rice beer has a very important role in the socio-cultural life of Deori tribe of Assam. Sujen is drunk in all their festive occasions and celebrations. The paper deals with the ethnobotanical observation on the preparation of Sujen by Deori tribes. The Plant species used in the preparation of Mod pitha (natural starter) for brewing Sujen are enumerated with their botanical names, families, vernacular names and plant parts used.
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The Northeastern region of India including Asom is one of the core area widely recognized as the centre of origin of rice germplasm. It is the largest region exceptionally rich in the rice genetic diversity. The physiographic and agro- ecological conditions vary in Asom very widely. The physical features, geographical isolation and historical realities have made the state an area of unique ethnic diversity. All the people of this state from the time immemorial have been using rice as staple food and some of the ethnic group use rice for preparation of alcoholic beverage. The present paper emphasized on ethnobotany and taxonomy of traditional rice varieties cultivated among the Tai Ahom of North Lakhimpur district of Asom for food security. Emphasis is also given on beverage processing techniques using rice varieties and other plant material used during preparation of rice beer commonly known as Sajpani (Tai) &, Laopani (Ass.) by the Ahom caste of Asom.
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Some cereal based traditional alcoholic beverages, Chhang, Lugari, Aara and Chiang consumed by people of Lahaul and Spiti area of Himachal Pradesh were documented and explored microbiologically. All these beverages were made by cooking their grains and then inoculating them with inocula called Phab/ Dhaeli. Chemical analysis of these products showed an acidic nature with pH in the range of 3.31-4.02 in undistilled samples, and 3.95-5.17 in distilled samples. Total soluble solids in all the undistilled samples were in the range of 14.58 to 18.56°B, whereas in distilled samples these were in the range of 7.19-8.0°B. Ethanol contents (%v/v) were 5-12% in undistilled and 13-19% in distilled products. A wide variation in certain other chemicals constituents', viz. acetaldehyde, methanol, ester, n- propanol, etc. was observed in the distilled alcoholic beverages. Microbiological examination of these beverages and their source of inocula revealed the dominance of yeasts mainly from genus Saccharomyces and Endomyces. Bacteria encountered in these beverages were from genus Lactobacillus, Acetobacter, and Bacillus.
Article
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Hamei and Marcha are mixed dough inocula used as starters for preparation of various indigenous alcoholic beverages in Manipur and Sikkim in India, respectively. These starters are traditionally prepared from rice with wild herbs and spices. Samples of Hamei and Marcha, collected from Manipur and Sikkim, respectively, were analysed for lactic acid bacterial composition. The population of lactic acid bacteria (LAB) was 6.9 and 7.1 Log cfu/g in Hamei and Marcha, respectively. On the basis of phenotypic and genotypic characters, LAB strains isolated from Hamei and Marcha were identified as Pediococcus pentosaceus, Lactobacillus plantarum and Lactobacillus brevis. Technological properties of LAB such as antimicrobial properties, effect on acidification, ability to produce biogenic amines and ethanol, degree of hydrophobicity and enzymatic activities were also performed. Pediococcus pentosaceus HS: B1, isolated from Hamei, was found to produce bacteriocin. None of the strains produced biogenic amines. LAB strains showed a strong acidifying ability and they also produced a wide spectrum of enzymes.
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In practically all the states of India, some fermented food or drink is part of daily intake for easy digestion of food. In eastern India, it is rice beer or wine. Drinking alcoholic beverages may be seen as stigma in many societies but in Eastern India, it has a place equivalent to that of lassi (beverage made from curd) and tea as a food item. Rice beer has achieved a holy status as it is used as a welcome drink by most of the tribes. It is equally liked by children, adults, men, and women and also used as offerings to deities and no ceremony is complete without ample use of rice beer. During the British period, authorities banned the production of this homemade drink to collect excise from distilled drinks, but it created social problems. This paper especially highlights various alcoholic rice beverages prepared by various tribes and their role in cultural life in eastern India.
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Rice-beer prepared at household level of the aboriginal communities of Assam is served to all irrespective of age and sex. Certain plant species are traditionally used by the Rabhas of Goalpara district of Assam for the preparation of rice-beer cakes as well as rice beer. Goalpara district of Assam is situated on the southern bank of the river Brahmaputra. Several villages of the district are the homeland of some Indo-Mongoloid tribes like the Bodos, Garos, Hajongs, Karbis, Rabhas, etc. Rice-beer accounts for a major portion of the daily caloric intake of these tribes. These tribes traditionally use certain herbs for the preparation of starter cake to be used in the making of alcoholic drink or rice-beer. Numerically, Rabhas are the most dominant tribe of the district. The study is aimed for the need of a detailed study on the curative properties of the herbs used by the Rabhas for the preparation of rice-beer cakes and rice-beer, which may provide better and beneficial remedies for many ailments.
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Utilisation of locally available agricultural and livestock produces into edible products known as ethnic fermented foods and beverages is common among different tribes of North Cachar Hills of Assam. Some of the familiar fermentedfoods are bekanthu (preparedfrom soyb,eans), miya (from bamboo shoot), saphak and satu (prepared from pork fat) and some common alcoholic beverages prepared from rice are judima, zunak, dekuijao and distilled liquor juharo. These ethnic foods and drinks are important contents in local diets of the people ofN. C Hills, Traditional methods of preparation withflow sheets, their mode of consumption and some social importance of these ethnicfermentedfoods and beverages ofN.C Hills have been documented, which may be useful to understand the traditional knowledge of food production in rural Assam.
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Kiad, popular local liquor plays an important role associated with various socio-cultural life of the Pnar tribe of Jaintia hills district. The paper highlights the indigenous method of preparation of the popular local liquor.
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Central India is rich in ethnic as well as floristic diversity. The tribal groups of this region mainly depend on the forests for food, medicine and shelter. Beverages play an important role in the life of these tribals. The paper presents the detailed account of two important beverages, Handia and Mahua consumed by the tribals of Central India.
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The traditional medical system of Indian Ayurveda indicates availability of a variety of alcoholic beverages named generally as Madya, which are hitherto unreported. The objective of this work was to compile and analyze such information obtained from traditional literature in order to document the impact of these beverages on human health. In this work, the Ayurvedic alcoholic beverages are grouped into seven major categories based on the nature of raw materials used and the nature of fermentation. Constituents and medicinal properties of diverse alcoholic beverages falling into each category are compiled. Novel information about the fractions of beverages, quality assessment and changes in properties as a result of storing are highlighted. The means for the application of modern scientific tools and vistas of scientific knowledge to hull out useful information as well as to document and validate the rich tradition of fermented therapeutics of Ayurveda is outlined.
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Himachal Pradesh presents anthropological, cultural, environmental and topographical diversity. Its reflection is seen in the variations of architecture of houses, clothing styles, food and food habits. The variations in availability of raw materials, environmental conditions clubbed with the time tested traditional knowledge and wisdom have made the people of different regions of this hill state to formulate, develop and perpetuate the consumption of a wide range of traditional foods and beverages unique to its places since ages. Bhatooru, siddu, marchu, seera, chilra, manna, aenkadu, sepubari, patande, doo, baari, dosha, malpude, babroo, bedvin roti, madrah, tchati, churpa, sura, chhang, kinnauri, angoori, chulli, lugri, arak/ara, rak, chukh and pickles (e.g. brinjal, lingri, bidana, peach, pear, plum, tomato, bottle gourd, etc.) made from different fruits and vegetables, etc. are some popular traditional products that are unique to the tribal and rural belts of Himachal Pradesh. Some of these products, e.g. bhatooru, chilra and tchati constitute staple food in rural areas of the state while others are prepared and consumed during marriages, local festivals and special occasions, and form part of the sociocultural life of hill people. However, the production of these foods and beverages is largely limited to household level.
Article
From time immemorial the people of Manipur use Yu for medicine, relaxant and offerings. It is a distilled product of the fermented local rice. The technology of the preparation of Yu is a traditional one and the product is a source of income generation to the poorer sections of people. The technology is amenable for upgradation in a scientific way. Yu is a strong solvent for many important active constituents of medicinal plants, whose actions play a potent role in the traditional medicine. The paper deals with the uses of 12 plant species belonging to 12 families, their mode of action and applications collected from traditional healers. Fermentation as a method of food preservation was first used in the eastern part of China in 350 BC 1 . The technique spread to Japan, Thailand, Indonesia and Malasian regions. Through this process man had been producing different types of foods, chemicals, and medicine for his welfare. Fermentation is the natural process in which carbohydrates are oxidized to alcohol and other compounds by anaerobic microbes. It is a biological oxidation process employed by certain microorganisms for their energy requirements. In fermentation, breakdown of substances is never complete and hence there is always incomplete liberation of energy. It is caused by the activities of microorganisms ranging from fungi to bacteria, and with their variations the end products of the process can be either alcohol or organic acids 2-9 . The production of these different substances is made through the common key intermediate, the pyruvic acid, whose reactions are outlined 10 (Fig. 1). Fermentation is the only process employed for the production of alcoholic beverages. These alcoholic beverages are prepared by fermentation of substances such as cereal grains and fruits. Today, the consumption of alcohol is worldwide and it is used in medicine and for relieving physical discomforts, illness or for pleasure. Alcoholic beverages are of two types: (1) Fermented beverages -in which, ethyl alcohol is formed by the fermentation of sugar present either naturally in the source or produced by the transformation of starch, e.g. beer, wine and toddy. (2) Distilled beverages – these are obtained by distilling an alcohol containing liquid that resulted from fermentation such as wine or fermented fruits juice and then further treating the distillate to obtain a beverage of specific character; also known as hard liquor, e.g. whisky, brandy, rum, gin, etc. 11 .
Article
In Manipur state of North-Eastern India, wine from glutinous rice using traditional solid state starter called 'Hamei' is particularly interesting because of its unique flavour. A total of 163 yeast isolates were obtained from fifty four 'Hamei' samples collected from household rice wine preparations in tribal villages of Manipur. Molecular identification of yeast species was carried out by analysis of the restriction digestion pattern generated from PCR amplified internal transcribed spacer region along with 5.8S rRNA gene (ITS1-5.8S-ITS2). Seventeen different restriction profiles were obtained from the size of PCR products and the restriction analysis with three endonucleases (Hae III, Cfo I and Hinf I). Nine groups were identified as S. cerevisiae, Pichia anomala, Trichosporon sp., Candida tropicalis, Pichia guilliermondi, Candida parapsilosis, Torulaspora delbrueckii, Pichia fabianii and Candida montana by comparing this ITS-RFLP profile with type strains of common wine yeasts, published data and insilico analysis of ITS sequence data available in CBS yeast database. ITS-RFLP profile of eight groups was not matching with available database of 288 common wine yeast species. The most frequent yeast species associated with 'Hamei' were S. cerevisiae (32.5%), P. anomala (41.7%) and Trichosporon sp. (8%). The identity of major groups was confirmed by additional restriction digestion of ITS region with Hind III, EcoRI, Dde I and Msp I. The genetic diversity of industrially important S. cerevisiae group was investigated using Pulsed Field Gel Electrophoresis (PFGE). Although most of the 53 strains of S. cerevisiae examined were exhibited a common species specific pattern, a distinct degree of chromosomal length polymorphism and variable number of chromosomal DNA fragments were observed with in the species. Cluster analysis showed seven major karyotypes (K1-K7) with more than 83% similarity. The karyotype pattern K1 was the most frequent (67.9%) among the strains from different samples. Other karyotypes K2-K7 were very unique with less than 80% similarity. Finally using mitochondrial DNA restriction analysis (mt-DNA RFLP), S. cerevisiae strains belonging to the major karyotype K1 were distinctly differentiated with highly polymorphic bands by Hinf I and Hae III endonucleases.
Folklore of Bengal (p. 187)
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A historical dictionary of Indian food
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Achaya, K. T. (1998). A historical dictionary of Indian food (p. 345). Delhi: Oxford University 184 Press.
Religion and Folklore ofNorthernlndia (p. 435)
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Crooke, W. (1896). Religion and Folklore ofNorthernlndia (p. 435). New Delhi: S. Chand & Co 195 (Rev. ed.).
Folklore of Assam (p. 142)
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Celebrating spring in Silvassa. The Tribune
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Folklore of Orissa (p. 160)
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Apong, an alcoholic beverage of cultural significance of the Mising community of northeast India
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Ethnological observations fermented food products of certain tribes of Arunachal Pradesh
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Kumar, T. T. (1988). History of rice in India (p. 242). Delhi, India: Gyan Publishing House.
tribal people use rice wine in Vasant Utsav. 139 The belief is that unless one is knocked out and fully drunk, he or she would not get the blessing of 140 the Goddess Mahavidya Rice wine is considered to be a favorite drink of deities such as 141 Kameshwari in Assam
  • Dangoriya
  • Das
Dangoriya (Das, 1972). In Silvassa (Maharashtra), tribal people use rice wine in Vasant Utsav. 139 The belief is that unless one is knocked out and fully drunk, he or she would not get the blessing of 140 the Goddess Mahavidya (Pai, 1994). Rice wine is considered to be a favorite drink of deities such as 141 Kameshwari in Assam, Kamakhya in South, and Durga in Bengal. Offerings of animal sacrifice and 142 rice wine are a must (Bhattacharyya, 1978; Das, 1972; Das & Mahapatra, 1979).
Beverages from rice Folklore of Bengal (p. 187)
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Anonymous, (1993). Beverages from rice. Philippine Rice Newsletter, 6(4),4. 188 Bhattacharyya, A. (1978). Folklore of Bengal (p. 187). New Delhi.Jndia: National Book Trust.
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Bora, S. S., Lahan, P. L., Madumita, B., et al. (2013). Natural resource management by Galo tribe of 190
FolklQreiJPfOrissa (p. 160)
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Das, K. B., & Mahapatra, L. M. (1979). FolklQreiJPfOrissa (p. 160). New Delhi, India: National 201 Book Trust.
Traditionally used herbs in the preparation of rice-beer by the 203
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Deka, D., & Sanna, G. C. (2010). Traditionally used herbs in the preparation of rice-beer by the 203
Ricinus communis leaves on the. raw materials and on products at different steps in 164 order to keep all the evil forces ai7aY:~hich may deteriorate the quality of rice beer (Deka & Sanna
  • Pegu
The Santhals always keep one or a fewilly chillies and a piece of charcoal, while the Rabhas place 163 charcoal and Ricinus communis leaves on the. raw materials and on products at different steps in 164 order to keep all the evil forces ai7aY:~hich may deteriorate the quality of rice beer (Deka & Sanna, 165 2010). The Miris and Deurisd[eep citrus fruits away from the vicinity during preparation of E'pob 166 and apong, because they\.re said to make apong acidic or sour (Pegu et al., 2013). The Kabris 167 believe consumption ofhor before offering to God is a taboo. Preparation of thap (fennenter tablet) 168 by women of the clan Bey and clan Hanjang is considered taboo by Kabris (Teron, 2006). Normally