Mohinga with fritters
|Place of origin||Myanmar|
|Main ingredient(s)||Catfish, vermicelli noodles, fish sauce, fish paste, ginger, banana stem, lemongrass, onions, garlic, chickpea flour|
Mohinga (Burmese: မုန့်ဟင်းခါး; MLCTS: mun. hang: hka:, IPA: [mo̰ʊɴhɪ́ɴɡá]) is a rice noodle and fish soup from Myanmar and is an essential part of Burmese cuisine. It is considered by many to be the national dish of Myanmar. It is readily available in most parts of the country. In major cities, street hawkers and roadside stalls sell dozens of dishes of mohinga to the locals and passers-by. Although mohinga is available throughout the day, it is usually eaten for breakfast.
There are different varieties of mohinga in various regions of Myanmar. Rakhine mohinga has more fish paste and less soup. Its ingredients depend on their availability. However, the standard dish comes from southern Myanmar, where fresh fish is more readily available. The main ingredients of mohinga are chickpea flour and/or crushed toasted rice, garlic, onions, lemongrass, banana tree stem, ginger, fish paste, fish sauce, and catfish in a rich broth cooked and kept on the boil in a cauldron. It is served with rice vermicelli, dressed and garnished with fish sauce, a squeeze of lime, crisp fried onions, coriander, spring onions, crushed dried chillis, and, as optional extras, crisp fried fritters such as split chickpeas (pè gyaw) (ပဲကြော်), urad dal (baya gyaw) (ဘယာကြော်) or gourd (bu thee gyaw) (ဗူးသီးကြော်) or sliced pieces of Chinese donuts (အီကြာကွေး), as well as boiled egg and fried nga hpè fish cake (Burmese: ငါးဖယ်ကြော်).
It is perhaps the most popular breakfast dish of all, now available as an "all-day breakfast" in many towns and cities. Mohinga is also served with all the trimmings at formal functions and nowadays it is also sold in dry packets as a ready-made powder that is used for making the broth. Street hawkers are the original purveyors of this popular dish doing the rounds through neighbourhoods where they have regular customers. They carry the soup cauldron on a stove on one side of a shoulder pole and rice vermicelli and other ingredients along with bowls and spoons on the other. It used to be available only early in the morning and at street pwès or open air stage performances and zat pwès or itinerant theatres at night. Trishaw peddlers began to appear in the 1960s and some of them set up pavement stalls making mohinga available all day.
Mandalay trishaw peddler.jpg
A mohinga trishaw peddler in Mandalay will stop for customers.
Mohinga stall, Mandalay, Myanmar.JPG
Mohinga is available all day from pavement stalls such as this in Mandalay.
Ready-made packages containing powder to cook mohinga soup is also available.