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Time-warped Goa village to celebrate a unique traditional delicacy, patoli on Independence Day

Village of Socorro is located in a valley that is around 10 km from capital Panaji

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Patoli. Image source: goatrons.com
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Socorro, August 14, 2016: On Independence Day that falls on August 15, a tiny village in Goa will not only celebrate the country’s freedom with fervour and zeal but will also honour the patoli, an unsung, delicious, time-warped local dessert, served delicately wrapped in turmeric leaf.

The Socorro Socio Art and Cultural Association has been using the aegis of Independence Day to promote the patoli, a unique and traditional delicacy, which is cooked in both Hindu and Christian homes on festive occasions, especially during the monsoon, when fresh turmeric leaves are available in plenty.

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Located in a valley around 10 km from capital Panaji, the village of Socorro is actually just a short distance from the bustling National Highway 17, but in reality, with its green fields, foliage and traditional Goan homes, the village could well be stuck in a past era.

Marius Fernandes, who has been the soul and strength behind the Patolleanche fest (festival of the patolli), says the success of the festival proves that without sponsorship, alcohol, chief guest and plastic, an event driven by genuine passion can still be a success today.

Patollio, a delicacy in Goa. Image source: minifoodescapades.wordpress.com
Patilo, a delicacy in Goa. Image source: minifoodescapades.wordpress.com

“It’s basically three festivals rolled in one. At 9 a.m., the feast of Our Lady of Assumption is celebrated at the Our Lady of Socorro Church followed by an Independence Day programme by Our Lady of Succour primary school, also in Socorro. As we do not have to wait for a chief guest, we start with the Patolleanche Fest exactly at 11 a.m.,” Fernandes tells IANS.

“We also have some basic rules and aims for our festivals, like there is no chief guest, no sponsors, no prizes, no competition, no plastics and no alcohol. The aim of our festival is to empower women and children. Our festival caters to over 1,500 people, so villagers form groups in the seven vaddos (wards) of Socorro to take up the responsibility of buying, cooking and sharing cooking recipes,” says Fernandes, who prefers to be called a cultural activist.

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The star of the event is obviously the patolli.

The ingredients required are all earthy and available in Goa, especially during the monsoon. There’s grated coconut, coconut jaggery, cardamom, salt to taste, rice and, of course, turmeric leaves.

The rice is first boiled and kneaded into a paste and smeared on the turmeric leaf, the rest of the ingredients are boiled in a little water until the stuffing is cooked. It is then wrapped into the turmeric leaf and steamed for around 20 minutes.

When it’s time to eat, one simply strips the turmeric leaf off and bites into the patolli.

While for Hindus a patoli is the dish-of-the-day during Nag Panchami, for the Christians it is the flavour of the day during the feast of Our Lady of Assumption.

But Independence Day in Socorro is not just about gobbling down the delightful patolis. There’s more to it.

“This year’s menu will include local Goan rice, bhende (okra) curry, fish kismur (a dish made from dry fish and grated coconut), mango pickles and like served on a patraval (leaf plate) besides sannas (idlis fermented with toddy) and pez (rice water) which will be served in kotteio’s (coconut shells). We try and be as eco-friendly as possible,” Fernandes says, adding that the venue will be decorated with recycled material and cloth flags.

“We have been using the same material and flags for the last five years. Our festival has created a great deal of interest and sometimes we are invited to share our ideas.” (IANS)

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A Diet Rich in Nutrients Helps In Living Longer: Study

Anti-inflammatory foods consist of fruits and vegetables, tea, coffee, whole grain bread, breakfast cereal, low-fat cheese, olive oil.

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This diet may help you live longer Pixabay

Adhering to a diet rich in fruits, vegetables, whole grain bread, nuts, olive oil and canola oil may help you live longer, a new study has found.

The findings, published in the Journal of Internal Medicine, suggest that those who closely follow an anti-inflammatory diet have an 18 per cent lower risk of all-cause mortality.

The researchers also found that those who follow the diet experience a 20 per cent lower risk of cardiovascular mortality, and a 13 per cent lower risk of cancer mortality, when compared with those who followed the diet to a lesser degree.

Anti-inflammatory
A bowl of fresh fruits a day may lower the risk of developing diabetes by 12 per cent, a study has showed. Pixabay

“Our dose-response analysis showed that even partial adherence to the anti-inflammatory diet may provide a health benefit,” said lead author Joanna Kaluza, Associate Professor at the Warsaw University of Life Sciences in Poland.

It was also found that smokers who followed the diet experienced even greater benefits when compared with smokers who did not follow the diet, the team said.

For the study, the research team involved 68,273 Swedish men and women aged between 45 and 83 years. The participants were followed for 16 years.

The anti-inflammatory potential of the diet was estimated using the validated anti-inflammatory diet index (AIDI), which includes 11 potential anti-inflammatory and five potential pro-inflammatory foods.

Anti-inflammatory
The researchers also found that those who follow the diet experience a 20 per cent lower risk of cardiovascular mortality. Flickr

Anti-inflammatory foods consist of fruits and vegetables, tea, coffee, whole grain bread, breakfast cereal, low-fat cheese, olive oil and canola oil, nuts, chocolate, and moderate amounts of red wine and beer.

Also Read: Controlling Diet a Remedy For Metabolic Syndrome

Pro-inflammatory foods include unprocessed and processed red meat, organ meats, chips, and soft-drink beverages, the team said. (IANS)