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Sana Thongba is a traditional mild Manipuri dish prepared with paneer and milk. Having milk based gravy and minimal spices, Sana thongba is a perfect dish with rice, roti or paratha. I made this popular Manipuri food in instant pot with tofu and coconut milk to create vegan sana thongba.sana thongba featured in white bowl and white cloth around the bowl, side view

Actual sana thongpa or paneer thongba dish consists of paneer and any seasonal vegetable like peas, beans, potato. Simmered in milk gravy with basic spices like turmeric powder, cumin seed, ginger garlic paste, and onion. Manipuri vegetarian dishes involves less oil and spices in cooking.

Manipuri food is spicy because they use chili peppers for flavor and spice instead of using any masala. Even if I use minimal spices making this vegan Manipuri paneer curry recipe, the flavors are just magical. You cannot resist licking your fingers afterward. This vegan paneer thongba recipe is the proof of their simple, aromatic yet flavorful cooking style.

In Manipuri language, Meeteilon “Sana” means a milk-based product (paneer) and “Thongba” or “Thongpa” means curry, hence paneer curry. It is very similar to Indian matar paneer (vegan matar paneer) but with fewer ingredients. Sana Thongpa is a very famous Manipuri vegetarian dish served often during festivals like Ushop. The reason this recipe stands out from other paneer recipes is its milk based gravy. So definitely not suitable for those who are lactose intolerant.manipuri traditional vegan paneer thongba served with quinoa in two bowls. Ariel click with two bowls on a serving tray, dry red chili and green coriander used as prop

What is traditional Manipuri food?

Manipur is a state in Northeast India, with the city of Imphal as its capital. It is one of the seven states belongs to Northeast which is also known as seven sisters. In Manipur, people raise their own vegetables in the kitchen garden and fishes in small ponds around their houses. Vegetables are grown at home and the same available in the local market, Manipuri cuisine includes all seasonal produce in cooking. Their diet includes rice, fish, and a number of leafy vegetables and a variety of herbs.

What are the popular dishes in Manipur cuisine?

Manipuri cuisine is the traditional cuisine of Manipur. They use minimal spices and fresh seasonal vegetables in their cooking. Therefore many of the dishes revolve around freshly produced seasonal ingredients, Eromba, Singju, Chamthong or Kangshoi, Morok Metpa, Kang-ngou or kaang-hou, Nganam, Nga-thongba, Ooti, pakoura thongba, chagem pomba, Keli chana, alu kangmet, sana thongba which is prepared with paneer in milk gravy, and a-nganba are some of their famous traditional Manipuri dishes.

Here I am posting about one of the most popular vegetarian Manipuri Delicacy named Sana Thongba which is

  • Vegan as I used tofu in place of paneer
  • Milk is substituted with coconut milk
  • This is a gluten-free recipe as well
  • Mild spicy
  • Cooked under 30 minutes
  • Made in instant pot within 30 minutes
  • Need fewer ingredients to make this delicious Manipuri sana
  • Healthy, delicious and aromatic vegan paneer curry

Is Manipuri food healthy?

Manipuri food is definitely very healthy and organic. Vegetables and herbs are homegrown, fishes are raised in fish ponds around their houses. Due to this fact, every season has its own charm with special seasonal vegetables and food preparation. The taste of Manipuri cuisine is very different from any other Indian cuisine due to the use of a variety of seasonal herbs and roots. Manipuri people eat healthy, nutritious, organic and seasonal food.vegan sana thongba or vegan paneer curry click from up in a white serving bowl.

How to make Manipuri Style Vegan Sana Thongpa Recipe?

To make vegan sana thongpa first I cut tofu in pieces, shallow fried in oil and kept aside. Then in the same pot added cumin seeds, ginger-garlic paste, green chilies and sauteed for 2 minutes. Mixed tofu cubes and mix vegetables and stirred. Finally added milk, turmeric, salt as per taste and simmered for 2 minutes. Vegan Manipuri sana thonba is ready to serve with rice or chapati. Check more than 26 recipes of Indian Flatbreads to choose from.

You May Also Like Some More Tofu Recipes

Vegan Matar Paneer Recipe | Tofu Matar Recipe | Tofu Matar Masala
Scrambled Tofu | Tofu Bhurji
Tofu Paratha | Tofu Stuffed Paratha
Tofu Palak | Tofu in Spinach Gravy

I made this Manipuri vegetarian paneer recipe with tofu and coconut milk, which makes this recipe vegan as well as gluten-free. Served with quinoa and alu kangmet. Guys believe me alu kangmet is made with potato, salt, and dry red chili but such a hearty and comfy dish that I finished as soon as I clicked all photos. This tofu curry can also be served with whole wheat naan or quinoa roti.

Making this recipe in instant pot was very easy and quick. Sana thongpa, a one-pot dish was ready under in just 30 minutes in instant pot. So let see how to make this finger-licking vegan paneer curry from Manipur cuisine, Vegan Sana Thongba.sana thongpa served with quinoa in white bowl with alu kangmet recipe.

Vegan Manipuri Sana Thongba | Vegan Paneer Curry

Ingredient                                                 4 Serving

2 Cup cubed tofu (225 gram)
2 Cup frozen vegetables (used carrot, beans, peas)
1/2 Cup onion chopped finely (optional)
1 Tsp grated ginger (fresh is better for flavors)
1 Tsp grated garlic (fresh is better for flavors)
Salt as per taste
1 Tsp cumin seeds
1/2 Tsp turmeric powder
1 Green chili chopped finely
1 Cup coconut milk
Handful coriander leaves finely chopped
2 Tblsp cooking oil

How To Make Manipuri Sana Thongba (vegan version) In Instant Pot

  1. Switch on the instant pot and set in SAUTE MODE. Set it HIGH, once the screen displays HOT add 1 tbsp oil.
  2. Add cubed tofu and saute for one minute. You need just slightly golden color. Transfer them on a serving plate and keep it ready.
  3. Add another 1 tbsp oil in the same pot. Once the oil is hot enough add cumin seeds and let them crackle.
  4. To this add ginger-garlic paste and chopped green chilies. Saute for a minute or until garlic is golden in color.tofu is sauteed in oil and transferred to a plate. In the same pot cumin seed crackled and added ginger-garlic paste
  5. Now add chopped onion and cook till color changes to golden.added chopped onion and cookedd until golden in color
  6. Once onions are cooked add mixed vegetable and tofu, give a nice stir.added mix vegetables and sauteed tofu. Mix well.
  7. Finally add coconut milk, turmeric powder, and salt. Mix well and cook for 2 minutes without covering lid. Adjust salt as per taste.add coconut mil, turmeric powder, salt and mix well.
  8. After two minutes cancel the SAUTE MODE and switch off the instant pot. Garnish with chopped green coriander and serve hot.vegan sana thongba ready to serve. I served in the bowl with quinoa.
  9. Traditional Manipuri vegetarian dish Vegan Sana Thongba is ready to serve.

How To Make Manipuri Sana Thongpa (vegan version) In Pressure Cooker or In A Pan

  1. First of all, heat a kadhai or a pan on medium flame and add 1 tbsp oil.
  2. To this add cubed tofu and saute for a 1-2 minute. You require a slightly golden color. Transfer the tofu cubes on a cleaned surface.
  3. Now add last 1 tbsp oil in the kadhai/pan and once it is hot add cumin seeds. Let them splutter.
  4. Add ginger-garlic paste along with chopped green chilies. Saute for a minute.
  5. To this add chopped onion and cook until onion changes its color to golden color.
  6. Once onion is golden in color add sauteed tofu and mix vegetables. Stir nicely.
  7. Finally add coconut milk, turmeric powder, and salt. Mix well and cook for 2 minutes on medium heat. Adjust salt accordingly.
  8. After two minutes switch off the flame and garnish with chopped green coriander. Serve with Indian flatbread or rice. I served it with boiled quinoa.

Note

  1. You can easily replace tofu with paneer/cottage cheese and Soya chunks.
  2. Any seasonal vegetable can be used. So feel free to use either one single veggie or a combination of vegetables along with tofu.
  3. At any point in time, you can adjust the spice level as per your taste buds. But traditionally sana thongba is mildly spicy with lesser hot spices.
  4. This recipe is created in a 6qt Instant Pot DUO60 Multi-use Programmable Pressure Cooker.

If you try this recipe then we would love to hear from you. Do share a picture with us on code2cook2017@gmail.com or tag me at @code2cook using hashtag #code2cook.

Also if you liked this recipe, Do not forget to rate us at the end of the post. You can follow me on Facebook Google+ | Instagram | Twitter | Pinterest for such easy recipes.

vegan sana thongba or vegan paneer curry click from up in a white serving bowl.
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Vegan Sana Thongba Recipe | Instant Pot Vegan Paneer Curry | Traditional Manipuri Sana Thongpa Recipe

Sana Thongba is a traditional mild Manipuri dish prepared with paneer and milk. Having milk based gravy and minimal spices, Sana thongba is a perfect dish with rice, roti or paratha. I made this popular Manipuri food in instant pot with tofu and coconut milk to create vegan sana thongba.
Course Main Course, Side Dish
Cuisine Indian
Keyword how to make sana thogba in instant pot, how to make vegan sana thongba, indian instant pot recipe, instant pot vegan paneer curry, manipuri cuisine, Traditional Manipuri food sana thongba, Traditional Manipuri sana Thongpa recipe, vegan manipuri paneer curry, vegan sana thongba, vegan sana thongpa
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 20 minutes
Total Time 30 minutes
Servings 4 Servings
Author code2cook

Ingredients

  • 2 Cup cubed tofu (225 gram)
  • 2 Cup frozen vegetables (used carrot, beans, peas)
  • 1/2 Cup onion chopped finely (optional)
  • 1 Tsp grated ginger (fresh is better for flavors)
  • 1 Tsp grated garlic (fresh is better for flavors)
  • Salt as per taste
  • 1 Tsp cumin seeds
  • 1/2 Tsp turmeric powder
  • 1 Green chili chopped finely
  • 1 Cup coconut milk
  • Handful coriander leaves finely chopped
  • 2 Tblsp cooking oil

Instructions

How To Make Manipuri Sana Thongba (vegan version) In Instant Pot

  • Switch on the instant pot and set in SAUTE MODE. Set it HIGH, once the screen displays HOT add 1 tbsp oil.
  • Add cubed tofu and saute for one minute. You need just slightly golden color. Transfer them on a serving plate and keep it ready.
  • Add another 1 tbsp oil in the same pot. Once the oil is hot enough add cumin seeds and let them crackle.
  • To this add ginger-garlic paste and chopped green chilies. Saute for a minute or until garlic is golden in color.
  • Now add chopped onion and cook till color changes to golden.
  • Once onions are cooked add mixed vegetable and tofu, give a nice stir.
  • Finally add coconut milk, turmeric powder, and salt. Mix well and cook for 2 minutes without covering lid. Adjust salt as per taste.
  • After two minutes cancel the SAUTE MODE and switch off the instant pot. Garnish with chopped green coriander and serve hot.
  • Traditional Manipuri vegetarian dish Vegan Sana Thongba is ready to serve.

How To Make Manipuri Sana Thongpa (vegan version) In Pressure Cooker or In A Pan

  • First of all, heat a kadhai or a pan on medium flame and add 1 tbsp oil.
  • To this add cubed tofu and saute for a 1-2 minute. You require a slightly golden color. Transfer the tofu cubes on a cleaned surface.
  • Now add last 1 tbsp oil in the kadhai/pan and once it is hot add cumin seeds. Let them splutter.
  • Add ginger-garlic paste along with chopped green chilies. Saute for a minute.
  • To this add chopped onion and cook until onion changes its color to golden color.
  • Once onion is golden in color add sauteed tofu and mix vegetables. Stir nicely.
  • Finally add coconut milk, turmeric powder, and salt. Mix well and cook for 2 minutes on medium heat. Adjust salt accordingly.
  • After two minutes switch off the flame and garnish with chopped green coriander. Serve with Indian flatbread or rice. I served it with boiled quinoa.

Notes

  1. You can easily replace tofu with paneer/cottage cheese and Soya chunks.
  2. Any seasonal vegetable can be used. So feel free to use either one single veggie or a combination of vegetables along with tofu.
  3. At any point in time, you can adjust the spice level as per your taste buds. But traditionally sana thongba is mildly spicy with lesser hot spices.
  4. This recipe is created in a 6qt Instant Pot DUO60 Multi-use Programmable Pressure Cooker.

This is my entry for monthly challenge post for our secret group Shhhhh Cooking Secretly group and this month we are celebrating Manipur.  My partner Priya Iyer who blogs at The World Through My Eyes has given me two secret ingredients cumin and milk for which I made this vegan sana thongba recipe.  Check her delicious mouth-watering recipe from Manipuri Cuisine Chak Hao Amubi which she made using secret ingredients black rice and sugar given by me.

I’m also sharing this recipe with Fiesta Friday #261. The co-hosts this week are Antonia @ Zoale.com and Julianna @ Foodie on Board.

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