Monthly Archives: July 2012

Cuttack City, India: Villager saving kittens

This picture of a villager carrying stranded kittens to dry land during floods in Cuttack City, India.

Image by Biswaranjan Rout / AP
Image by Biswaranjan Rout / AP


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Pakoras Give Buttered Ears a Rest


Fred R. Conrad/The New York TimesSpiced corn fritters with mango and tamarind chutney prepared by David Tanis in his kitchen.

HOT weather aside, you really know it’s summer when fresh sweet corn shows up at every Greenmarket and farm stand. I always love the sight of folks digging through piles of fat green-husked ears, looking for the best specimens. I’m right there with them, grabbing my own.

For the first few weeks of corn season, I’m happy to eat it on the cob, boiled or grilled, smeared with butter and sprinkled with salt and pepper or lime and chile powder. Or plain.

But at a certain point, it’s time to take those kernels off the cob and start playing. I may make my own creamed corn (butter-stewed, then finished with crème fraîche and chives) or a bright succotash with peppers, zucchini and sundry beans.

Adding fresh kernels to corn bread or polenta is always nice, or I’ll try a vegetarian corn chowder, with a broth made of simmered cobs, new potatoes and a fistful of fresh herbs.

This week, even in sweltering weather, I had a yen for something fried, and though I could have settled for corn-studded hush puppies, my inclination was to make something spicier, more complex. I love the vibrant flavor of Indian food, especially in summer. (It always seems refreshing.) So I turned to a few of my favorite Indian cookbooks for inspiration, and I found a solution: corn pakoras.

Crispy and well seasoned, pakoras are fritters that can be made from most any vegetable, corn included. I wanted to emphasize the corn flavor, so I used a fair amount of fine cornmeal, besides the more traditional chickpea flour. I got out my food processor to grind up fresh kernels for the batter, then in went the spices: the chiles, the ginger and scallions.

To accompany the pakoras, I craved a chutney that was sweet, hot and a little sour. Ripe mangoes and tamarind were at my local Indian grocery, so I used those, but green mango would have been good, or practically any other chutney, really.

Once the batter was made and the chutney assembled, I waited for sunset. Then it was time for an icy beverage before approaching the stove.

Using a couple of soup spoons, I slipped morsels of the mixture into a bare inch of hot oil. The frying took only a few minutes. (If you don’t want to fry them, cook them like pancakes on a well-oiled griddle.)

My little pakoras were just the thing for a hot night: spicy, crispy, sweet and savory.       

A version of this article appeared in print on July 18, 2012, on page D2 of the New York edition with the headline: Pakoras Give Buttered Ears A Rest.

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PICO Kite Flying Festival

Source: from From My Time Serving Gilbert

10th Annual Kite Flying Festival – Gilbert AZ

Lets go fly a kite up to the highest heights let’s go fly a kite and send it soaring…

Who: Pakistan Information & Cultural Organization (PICO)

What: 10th Annual Kite Flying Festival (Basant Mela)

When: Sunday March 25, 2012

Hours: 11 a.m. – 6 p.m.

Where: Crossroads Park 2155 E. Knox Road, Gilbert, AZ

Admission: FREE (Open to the Public)

Map Please: Crossroads Park

Gilbert homes for sale

Basant is a seasonal festival celebrated at the end of winter to welcome spring. “Kite flying” is the major and most colorful event of this festival. The sky is covered with colorful kites that are of medium size normally from 1 foot to 4 feet in diameter; kites are usually made of paper and made especially for this purpose. Kites are of different shapes and sizes and are tied with specially made thread called “Doore.”

Yellow is the color of the festival and is visible everywhere from kites to clothes. Basant is not only a kite flying event, it’s a cultural festival for the entire family.

The PICO Basant Mela is an excellent opportunity to participate in Kite Flying, shop for Pakistani arts and crafts, apparel, and jewelry. Try traditional Pakistani food, enjoy the music, kids and youth activities or experience a henna tattoo.

For additional information Phone (480) 586-1840 / (623) 570-9526

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