Every Sunday, Prescilla Zinyu brings an eclectic range of organic food products from North East at the Farmers’ market in Greater Noida’s Jonas Nursery. Most popular among these are her non-vegetarian pickles, turmeric powder tea, dried herbs, and the world famous dried Naga King Chilli. For residents of Delhi-NCR, it’s a weekly adventure of taste, fragrance and flavour from the north-east.
Sharing about her experiments with food, Zinyu says, “Life unfurls in mysterious ways. It has been a while living in Delhi, travelling throughout the country, discovering food and lost recipes with my husband. Whenever I am travelling, I would always make non-veg pickles at home and pack them for my survival. During the trip, my other companions would also like to try them out and they not only like the taste but also become curious to know more about the north-east food. This helped me make up my mind to start promoting organic north-east food.”
She feels that north-east is still largely unexplored in terms of its culture and food traditions. “North-east has so much variety to offer when it comes to food, yet people largely are unaware of it. So, I thought of a name which will bring attention and curiosity to others, “Terra Incognita”, which in latin means ‘unknown land’.” Zinyu started with few products in the beginning and has gradually elaborated the list of products available with her. “That’s how my organic food adventure began and I started with pickles, juices, and jams etc, which are quite handy to pick-up and can be easily introduced to others who would like to try out new things,” she adds.
To ensure the authentic taste remains intact she sources all organic products from Nagaland, Tripura, Assam, Manipur and Sikkim. Currently, a wide range of products are available with her including pickles, (veg, non-veg), jams, dried fruits, pulses, buckwheat powder, ginger powder, turmeric powder tea, dried herbs, dried king chilli etc. Her focus now is to market these products properly so that more and more people can enjoy and experience food from north-east.
In her constant endeavor to popularise North East food products she is regularly participating in events and exhibitions in Delhi-NCR. “Just after the brand name Terra Incognita was christened in July 2017, I participated at an event in Delhi at India gate “Northeast Calling”. As first timers the response was good, gradually I started promoting it online and the response has been quite positive. Delhi being the capital city of India and people from diverse regions staying here, they want to explore different cuisines as people have become more adventurous with food and food trends, and north-east food is definitely getting popularity now.”
Sharing her future plans, Zinyu says, “Though, it’s a little too early to say but will definitely try to bring the best food from the region, and expand the product list with dry herbs, teas, rice, varieties of fruits etc. Currently I have a Facebook page, “Terra Incognita” where all the products are available. If there is any requirements then the individual can inbox me and the delivery is made within a week anywhere in India. I have also been actively participating in food events to popularise NE food in Delhi and Noida.”