Hokh Syun- Traditional Sun-dried vegetables

Kashmir, India's crown jewel, not only provides beautiful marvels but also culinary delights. Their sun-dried food, called Hokh Syun, is a testament to this.

Hokh Syun, unlike Wazwan, was invented in Kashmir by Kashmiris to combat the paucity of vegetables during the winter. During hard winters in the past, a blanket of snow would deprive Kashmir's farms of harvest and cut them off from their import sources. To cope with this challenge, Kashmiris established the custom of sun-drying their crops during the peak summer months and preserving them in preparation for use during the solitary winters.

The modern times brought with them better connectivity, cropping patterns and storage facilities. The adversity ended, but the tradition stayed. Kashmiri women sun-dry turnips, radish, lotus stem, brinjal, tomatoes, and other vegetables every summer. Each vegetable requires its own method of drying. When the winter hits, these sun-dried vegetables are cooked according to traditional culinary methods that are still practiced today. The end result of this time-consuming process is a mouthwatering perfume that Kashmiris associate with winter warmth.

The following are some of Hokh Syun's most well-known and beloved dishes:

Wangan Hachi

Wangun (plural Wangan) is the Kashmiri name for the purple-colored egg-shaped vegetable known as 'aubergine' in Europe, 'eggplant' in North America, and 'brinjal' in South Asia. The green calyx at the top holds the brinjal together after it has been separated into four halves. After that, the sectioned vegetable is hung to dry in the sun on a rope. The brinjal, which has been sun-dried, is steeped in water until it swells. After that, it's deep-fried and served with tamarind, green gram, or yogurt as a sauce. Everyone likes and enjoys all of the many sorts.

Ale Hachi

'Ale' refers to bottle guards in Kashmiri. After being peeled, cut, and dried in the sun, they resemble slightly thicker strands of wood, hence the suffix Hachi, which is Kashmiri for wood. Hokh Syun Ale Hachi has the strongest flavor. Sun-dried bottle gourds are cooked with mutton or chickpeas, depending on personal choice. With both mixes, it turns magically excellent.

Gogji Aar

Sun-dried turnips are called Gogji Aar. Although dried turnips are popular in other regions of Asia, such as China, they are dried in Kashmir in a unique fashion. Turnips are peeled, rinsed, and sliced into thick spherical chunks before being hollowed out in the middle. After that, all of the pieces are tied together to form a garland. Finally, the garlands are strung on balconies to dry off in the sun. The Gogji Aar can be made with tomatoes, mutton, or cottage cheese, and each variant is delectable.


Also known as Hokhe Gad, these are Kashmiri dried fish. The Bolinai fish, which is a local species, is dried with great care. The fish is first wrapped in a delicate cotton towel that absorbs moisture and protects it from pests. They are then exposed to direct sunlight. The fish that has been sun-dried has a long shelf life. Hoggard is fried in mustard oil and served with a variety of creamy sauces. They become a savory winter treat as a result of this. Hoggard is a great source of protein as well as having a great flavor. Colds, flu, and even asthma are believed to be cured by them.

Ruwangan Hachi

These are sun-dried indigenous tomatoes that are dried on rooftops under the watchful eye of a determined worker who occasionally flips them upside down. Although dried tomatoes are eaten in many places of the world, Kashmiri Ruwangan Hachi has a unique chewy texture and sour flavor. They can be served as a side dish or accompanied by meat. It's also available as a powder to add to various recipes including curries. Ruwangan Hachi is tangy and finger-licking excellent in whichever shape it is served in.

Bamchoont Hache

Bamchoont Hache, a dried quince apple, is one Hokh Syun that is sure to please both Kashmiris and non-Kashmiris. The best quince apples are hand-picked and then sun-dried on open areas such as balconies, rooftops, and verandas in a sanitary manner. Their texture and flavor are increased after dehydration. With yogurt, the dried quince is excellent.


Dandelion greens, a wild leafy green vegetable, are known as Handh in Kashmiri. It's a winter vegetable that's been dried specifically for consumption. Handh had several medical properties when cooked with pork or fowl. It is used to alleviate back discomfort, the common cold, and chest infections in addition to building immunity.

Sun-dried Handh is a must-have meal for mothers-to-be, as it is healthy for both the mother and the newborn, due to its therapeutic properties and the fact that it generates heat in the body. At the first bath of the new mother after her delivery, called Handebaate, a special feast of sun-dried Handh is prepared. Handh isn't just ordinary Hokh Syun; it represents the joy of a newborn's life and his mother's sustenance.