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  • Erawan Waterfall - Thailand's natural treasure

    Erawan waterfall, a seven-tiered cascade in western Thailand, is arguably one of the most beautiful waterfalls in the world

    Erawan waterfall, a seven-tiered cascade in western Thailand, is arguably one of the most beautiful waterfalls anywhere in the world. Erawan is the Thai name for Airawata, the celestial six-tusked elephant upon which Lord Indra, master of the heavens, rides bearing his thunderbolt. The divine creature is depicted in Thailand as a three-headed (or often 33-headed) elephant who is the master of clouds and rain. The mountain of Erawan is thought to bear the shape of a hulking elephant and its crown is nearly always dense with mist and clouds.

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    The waterfall is the cynosure of the picturesque Erawan National Park in Thailand’s western province of Kanchanaburi, not far from the border with Myanmar. The elephant motif isn’t far from fact: There are wild elephants here in the quieter parts of the forest but visitors are rarely troubled by their presence. Along the walk to the waterfall, you can sight a variety of birds and, if luck allows, small mammals like monkeys, civets and river otters,

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  • 'Yahoo brings Vikas @ Home' is a brand new 52-week video series from Yahoo Lifestyle Cuisine. Every week, Masterchef Vikas Khanna will bring you one dish that has made a difference in his life; as he shares the recipe, he will also share his experiences and stories behind that recipe. Stay tuned for an exciting 52-week journey with Chef Vikas.

     

    EPISODE 33: POHA

     We all know breakfast is the most important meal of the day, so make it the healthiest one. This flattened rice recipe is not only easy to make, it is also full of all the nutrients you need for a perfect start to your day.


    INGREDIENTS

    2 cups flattened rice (poha)

    2 tablespoons vegetable oil

    2 teaspoons mustard seeds

    ½ teaspoon asafetida

    1 large sprig fresh curry leaves

    1 onion, finely chopped

    1 green chilli, finely chopped

    1 teaspoon turmeric powder

    1 carrot, finely diced

    ½ cup boiled peas

    Salt to taste

    A pinch of sugar

    Juice of 1 lemon

    <i>This Poha recipe is super easy and perfect for a nutritious breakfast meal.</i>


    METHOD

    1.    Transfer flattened rice (poha) to a strainer and rinse with water. Shake off excess water

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  • Sur - the port that launched a thousand dhows

    Since ancient times, commerce has linked the coasts of Oman and India. Dhows — enormous wooden boats — were built on both sides of the water more than two thousand years ago, almost exactly as they are today. From here in Sur, dhows were built for rich merchants and Emirs, sultans and slave traders.

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    Since times immemorial, commerce has linked the coasts of Oman and India. Dhows — those graceful, enormous, as well as capacious, masted wooden boats — were built on both sides of the water more than two thousand years ago, almost exactly as they are today. The Persian Gulf (also known as the Arab Gulf thanks to regional geopolitics) is separated from the Gulf of Oman (now also known as the Sea of Oman) by the Strait of Hormuz, the narrowest stretch of sea between the northeastern Arabian peninsula (present-day Sultanate of Oman) and the ancient land of Persia (modern Iran). The cusp of these civilizations engendered the legend of Sindbad the Sailor, immortalized in the Arabian Nights. Though Sindbad is thought to be a fictional hero, the boats he sailed were perhaps very similar to the dhows that dock at the marina in the Corniche at Sur.

    Sur is a quiet, picturesque city on the coast of the impossibly blue Sea of Oman, which still answers on some maps to its erstwhile name of the Gulf

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  • Velliangiri - Shiva's Silver Mountain

    One of southern India's least known hill stations, Velliangiri appeals to the nature enthusiast and spiritual seeker alike

    By Sunil Daman

    Forty kilometers from the hustle and bustle of Coimbatore stand the lush, forested slopes of the Velliangiri Mountain. Located less than 100 kilometers from the coast and topping nearly 6,000 feet in elevation, it’s no surprise that this mountain is capped by a near-permanent curtain of mist blowing in from the Arabian Sea. In fact, the name Velliangirimeans “Silver Mountain,” and refers to this misty veil.

    One of the lesser known hill stations of Tamil Nadu, it offers a “two-in-one” package – a fantastic nature reserve with a spiritual twist. Part of the Nilgiri Biosphere Reserve that is spread over Tamil Nadu, Kerala and Karnataka, Velliangiri is also a significant pilgrimage destination for Shiva devotees. It is known as Dakshin Kailash or “The Kailash of the South,” and the legend goes that Lord Shiva retreated to this mountain to grieve, when he failed to fulfill a devotee’s appeal to marry him! The maiden was none other than Kanyakumari, and she attained samadhi

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  • 'Yahoo brings Vikas @ Home' is a brand new 52-week video series from Yahoo Lifestyle Cuisine. Every week, Masterchef Vikas Khanna will bring you one dish that has made a difference in his life; as he shares the recipe, he will also share his experiences and stories behind that recipe. Stay tuned for an exciting 52-week journey with Chef Vikas.

    EPISODE 32: SWEET POTATO HALWA

    Otherwise known as shakkarkandi halwa, this super simple yet delicious dessert will remind you of the simple days of your childhood, says Chef Vikas Khanna. Try it out at home and let us know how it turned out.


    SHAKKARKANDI HALWA

    INGREDIENTS

    2 tablespoons clarified butter (ghee)

    6 to 8 cloves

    2 sweet potatoes, roasted, peeled & grated

    2 cups milk

    1 teaspoon ground cardamom

    A pinch saffron

    1 ½ tablespoons sugar (or as required)

    2 tablespoons calumpong (chironji) nuts

    10 walnuts, coarsely chopped

    METHOD

    1.    Heat ghee in a large pan on medium heat and as it melts, add cloves and sweet potatoes to it. Keep stirring, while gently

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