Himalayan Fermented Foods: Microbiology, Nutrition, and Ethnic Values, 1st Edition (Hardback) book cover

Himalayan Fermented Foods

Microbiology, Nutrition, and Ethnic Values, 1st Edition

By Jyoti Prakash Tamang

CRC Press

216 pages | 124 B/W Illus.

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pub: 2009-08-17
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The magnificent Himalayan Mountains, the highest in the world and home to the famed Mount Everest and K2, are also imbued with a rich diversity of ethnic fermented foods. Dr. Jyoti Prakash Tamang, one of the leading authorities on food microbiology, has studied Himalayan fermented foods and beverages for the last twenty-two years. His comprehensive volume, Himalayan Fermented Foods: Microbiology, Nutrition, and Ethnic Values catalogs the great variety of common as well as lesser-known fermented foods and beverages in the Himalayan region.

This volume begins with an introduction to the Himalayas and the Himalayan food culture. Using a consistent format throughout the book, Dr. Tamang discusses fermented vegetables, legumes, milk, cereals, fish and meat products, and alcoholic beverages. Each chapter explores indigenous knowledge of preparation, culinary practices, and microorganisms for each product. Additional information on microbiology and nutritive value supplements each section, and discussions on ethnic food history and values as well as future prospects for these foods complete the coverage.

Dr. Tamang demonstrates that fermentation remains an effective, inexpensive method for extending the shelf life of foods and increasing their nutritional content through probiotic function, and therefore remains a valuable practice for developing countries and rural communities with limited facilities.


I highly recommend Himalayan Fermented Foods to anyone (i.e. students, scientists and manufacturers) involved in the field of dairy and non-dairy fermented products because of the wealth of information it provides.

— A. Y. Tamime in International Journal of Dairy Technology

Table of Contents

The Himalayas and Food Culture

The Himalayas

Agriculture in the Himalayas

Ethnic people

Food culture

Fusion of Western and Eastern food cultures

What are ethnic fermented foods?

Fermented Vegetables

Important fermented vegetables


Nutritive value

Fermented Legumes

Important fermented soybean foods

Fermented black gram food


Nutritive value

Fermented Milks

Important fermented milk products


Nutritive valueF

ermented Cereals

Important fermented cereals


Nutritive value

Ethnic Fish Products

Important ethnic fish products


Nutritive value

Ethnic Meat Products

Important ethnic meat products


Nutritive value

Ethnic Starters and Alcoholic Beverages

Traditional starter culture

Alcoholic food beverages

Distilled liquor or alcoholic drink


Nutritive value

Antiquity and Ethnic Values


Ethnic values of the Himalayan fermented foods

Prospects of the Himalayan Fermented Foods

Medicinal aspects

Total substrate utilization

Commercialization through ethnic food tourism

Microbial genetic resources



About the Author

Dr. Jyoti Prakash Tamang, a leading authority in food microbiology, has been studying the Himalayan fermented foods and beverages concerning microbiology, nutritional aspects, functionalities, and food cultures for the last 22 years. He earned a B.Sc. (honors), M.Sc., and Ph.D. from North Bengal University, followed by post-doctoral research at the National Food Research Institute (Japan) and the Institute of Hygiene and Toxicology (Germany). Dr. Tamang was awarded the Gold Medal by North Bengal University in 1985, the National Bioscience Award of Department of Biotechnology of Ministry of Science and Technology of India in 2005, and became a Fellow of the Biotech Research Society of India in 2006. Dr. Tamang has published more than 75 research papers in peer-reviewed international and national journals, has filed a patent, and is currently guiding several students. He has presented his works in 17 different countries and is a member of several prestigious national and international academic and scientific organizations. He is a chief editor of Journal of Hill Research, and he is a regular reviewer of many reputable national and international scientific journals and books. Dr. Tamang is the president of the Centre for Traditional Food Research at Darjeeling, a team leader of the Food Microbiology Laboratory, and a senior visiting faculty in microbiology at Sikkim Central University.

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