Monthly Archives: August 2019

Five Chinans, including two children, die in horrific crash in India

Posted on 22/08/2019 by

Five members of an n family have been killed after their SUV crashed on Yamuna Expressway in Uttar Pradesh. Photo: http://yamunaexpresswayauthority Five members of an n family have been killed after their SUV crashed on Yamuna Expressway in Uttar Pradesh. Photo: yamunaexpresswayauthority上海龙凤论坛m
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Five members of an n family, including two children, have died in a horrific accident on a freeway in India on Sunday.

Anamika Dutta, 45, her daughters Pipasa, 15, Neetika, 12, her son Tirvijai, 20, and her sister Sonia, 25, were killed when the wheel of their SUV burst as they were travelling along the Yamuna Expressway in Uttar Pradesh on their way to a picnic, according to local police.

The SUV was sent careening out of control into a safety barrier, then a road divider, flipping upside down and landing on the opposite side of the expressway.

Residents of a nearby village tried to help the family, but the two women and two girls died at the scene. Tirvijai was taken to Mathura Hospital where he died a short time later, police said.

Rupendra Dutta, Anamika’s husband and father of the three children, was also in the car and remains in hospital.

His father-in-law, N K Paliwal, and the driver of the SUV were also hospitalised and were being treated for injuries sustained in the crash.

Rupendra Dutta, originally from Delhi, runs a restaurant in Adelaide and was holidaying with his family in India at the time of the accident.

“He was on picnic to Agra with his wife, two daughters, son, sister-in-law and father-in-law, when the tragic incident took place”, a local told Indian news site NDTV.

Police spokesperson Narendar Singh told the Times of India that the accident took place around 3.30pm “due to a tyre burst”.

The Department of Foreign Affairs at Trade confirmed the deaths on Monday night, local time.

“[DFAT] is providing consular assistance in accordance with the Consular Services Charter to members of a family of ns who passed away following a traffic accident in Uttar Pradesh, India,” a spokeswoman said in a statement.

“Due to privacy obligations, we are unable to provide any further comment,” the spokeswoman said.

The bodies have been sent for post mortems.

Almost 2598 accidents and 38 deaths have occurred on the Yamuna Expressway between 9 August, 2012 and 30 September 2015, according to Indian government figures.  */]]>

Inside Nigella Lawson’s kitchen

Posted on 22/08/2019 by

The freedom to improvise is one of the things Nigella Lawson loves about home cooking. Photo: Supplied The freedom to improvise is one of the things Nigella Lawson loves about home cooking. Photo: Supplied
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She’s sold more than three million cookbooks worldwide and fronted a string of successful television cooking shows. But Nigella Lawson doesn’t claim to be a chef, much less a celebrity chef. She grew up in a food-mad family – the sort that sat around the table talking about what they ate yesterday, what they were eating now and what their next meal would be – but says it was the “disgusting” meals at boarding school that switched interest to obsession. Living in London gives Lawson access to a cosmopolitan array of ingredients, something reflected in her latest cookbook and accompanying television series, Simply Nigella, which scoop up inspiration from around the world.

The staples

My pantry: I have amassed such a lot of culinary clutter that it would be hard to itemise everything I keep in the pantry. But there is definitely always good bread, a hefty fudgy sourdough and some sesame-seeded flatbreads. I also always have unwaxed lemons, and a huge stash of nuts and seeds. I have a huge array of mustards: several pots of Colman’s English mustard (and tubes of it for when I’m travelling) as well as Dijon, wholegrain and tarragon mustards. I must have various chilli sauces, notably harissa and the Korean gochujang. I have a whole carb cupboard for pasta, rice and noodles, and although I keep all sorts of rice, the one I cannot live without is short grain brown rice. Good salt is essential, and by this I mean Maldon. Vegemite is a must and, on the sweet front, good dark chocolate, Nutella, chestnut puree, Lyle’s golden syrup, condensed milk (to make my no-churn ice-creams) and maple syrup. I have a real thing these days for RAW Health unfiltered apple cider vinegar, and I panic if I don’t have a good supply of Cretan Gold organic extra virgin olive oil, though I also need to have Farrington’s Mellow Yellow cold-pressed rapeseed oil, and a tub of unrefined coconut oil (and coconut butter) to hand. And I always have an absolute army of avocados!

My fridge: I always keep a couple of heads of cauliflower, which I spice with cumin, paprika and a pinch of cinnamon and roast with chickpeas; leggy broccoli, which I boil briefly and douse with soy and sprinkle with sesame seeds; kale and cavolo nero​, which I boil and eat with my Cretan Liquid Gold extra virgin olive oil and Maldon salt, and perhaps a sprinkle of chilli flakes. I always have radishes, which I eat raw, as well as pickling them, roasting them, and adding them to be quickly poached in soup with ramen. Ginger is a must, as I eat an awful lot of it, as well as sweet potatoes, butternut pumpkin, beetroot, fennel (to be eaten raw in salads or braised in the oven), onions, garlic and banana shallots. The herbs I always keep in the fridge are flat-leaf parsley and coriander; thyme, rosemary and bay leaf grow in the garden.

I seem to keep a lot of milk in the house – full fat and semi-skimmed dairy milk as well as unsweetened almond and oat milks (great for matcha​ lattes and for making my oat pancakes). Haloumi and feta are always in my fridge, and occasionally comte and a really whiffy blue cheese. And I keep both salted and unsalted butters as well as double and clotted creams.

As for the freezer, I don’t have a very big one, but along with bread, I keep frozen broccoli florets, spinach, petits pois and edamame, filo pastry, berries, home-made ice-cream, and I always have a stash of cooked chickpeas and black beans and chicken stock, as well as many tubs and bags of leftovers.

Secret vice

I can’t honestly say I have a secret vice, but I can often be found crunching my way through a bag of blue corn chips. And I have a big box filled with all things liquorice.

Last night’s dinner

Last night’s dinner was one of my regular fallbacks: warm roast cauliflower and chickpea salad with parsley and pomegranate seeds.

I’m drinking

I chain-drink tea (Typhoo non-stop, interspersed with the odd rooibos) and am a complete aquaholic – I get through at least three litres of Evian a day. I’ve got a huge drinks cupboard, but often use these liqueurs more for cooking with than drinking, and although I do keep vodka in the freezer (I am rather partial to Tito’s at the moment) it’s only on rare occasions I drink it – as a vodka martini, straight up with a twist, mixed in my Mason cocktail shaker.

My toolkit

A mezzaluna – that half-moon-shaped knife with a handle at either end, which I use for chopping herbs (as well as chocolate). A Freestanding Kitchen-Aid as well as a Kenwood stick blender (both in bright pink). Le Creuset​ enamelled cast-iron casseroles, as well as some cast-iron skillets and a Netherton slow-cooker, which comes with a removable cast-iron bowl so that you can start things off on the stove first. I also am very attached to my old Zojirushi rice cooker and I wouldn’t want to be without my Microplane fine grater.

My inspiration

I don’t need anything added to my kitchen to make me want to cook in it: it fills me with pleasure every time I’m in it (which is most of the time). But if there’s anything about that makes it a particularly inspiring place, it’s the light; the great uplifting luxury of light.

Favourite

I have a collection of old, burnt wooden spoons from my mother and my sister Thomasina’s kitchens, both of whom died young.

Most unforgettable meal

All meals are unforgettable for me: I seem to remember everything I eat. But whenever I think of the perfect evening out, it’s of eating at Icebergs, at Bondi Beach, with the waves splashing savagely outside.

Recipe stalwart

My chicken tray-bake with bitter orange and fennel – it was the first thing I cooked in my new kitchen, and I have cooked it more than anything else since. It makes any evening utterly effortless and fragrantly delicious.

Discovery

A more recent addition to my pantry is matcha powder, which I use for cakes, ice-cream and matcha lattes. It is pretty costly, so having baked with it, I made sure to find many other ways of using up the packet, and now have to keep it in the house.

Canberra weather: Heatwave hits capital with string of 35-plus degree days to come

Posted on 22/08/2019 by

Eliza Chalmers, 8, of Wanniassa cooling off at Canberra Olympic Pool in Civic. Photo: Jeffrey ChanA heatwave of temperatures in the mid-to-high 30s was tipped to swelter the capital until Friday.
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Tops of 38 degrees on Wednesday and 36 on Tuesday and Thursday were expected to follow Monday’s maximum of 35.

Overnight temperatures were likely to be 5 to 6 degrees above average, with a minimum of 21 degrees on Thursday.

But Canberrans will score quick relief from the hot spell, with a significant 15-degree drop set for Friday.

They may also see up to 40 millimetres of rain across Thursday and Friday, which is more than half Canberra’s average monthly rainfall.

Bureau of Meteorology climatologist Acacia Pepler said about one in four years has a string of days reaching 35 degrees or higher.

“There have been 20 heatwaves since Canberra Airport opened in 1939, of which 16 were in January,” she said.

“The longest spell was nine days of 35 plus, over 21-29 January, 1947.So this heatwave is significant, but not record-breaking.”

However, it is much hotter than last year’s “relatively cold and wet” January, which only had one day above 35 degrees.

This summer would have likely had five days above 35 degrees after this heatwave, while the average year has three days that hot.

The hottest January day on record for Canberra was 42 degrees on January 18, in 2013, and the hottest day for any month was 42.2 degrees on February 1, in 1968, Ms Pepler said.

While this week’s temperatures are well above January’s average daytime temperature of 28, the expected rainfall was also high.

Thursday and Friday could get more than the 35 millimetres that fell throughout December.

The cool change will see a top of 21 on Friday, 23 on Saturday and 27 on Sunday, with temperatures likely to stay in the high 20s for most of the following week.

The sudden drop in temperatures is caused by a deep low pressure trough followed by a cold front, Weatherzone meteorologist Kim Westcott said.

“We are going to see much cooler air moving behind this cold front,” she said.

“You’ll also notice that Friday will be showery, cloudy and a bit windy at times, too.”

But until the heat subsides, ACT Health advises Canberrans to keep hydrated, stay rested and eat fresh food.

People should limit non-essential strenuous activity, avoid alcohol and caffeine when dehydrated and take cool showers.

“Wear lightweight clothing and be sun-smart,” the website says. “Check on others including children, elderly, people with medical conditions and don’t forget your pets.

“Never leave anyone (particularly children or the elderly) in an unattended car. Temperatures inside a car can rise to 50 degrees within a few minutes, leading to serious illness or death.”

Children’s safety is said to be a priority for John Skene, who regularly photographs kids swimming during the summer.

He recently entered The Canberra Times’ summer photocomp with a picture of his six-year-old family friend Callan Dunstan enjoying a waterslide at a Christmas party.

“I’m well aware that little ones can get into trouble in six inches of water,” he said.

“I’m firstly conscious of safety, then it’s also about fun and catching the moment.”

To enter this season’s competition, send in a maximum of three photos with a summer theme to [email protected]上海龙凤论坛m.au as attached JPEG files at least 150 kilobytes and not more than one megabyte in size. Include your name, address, phone number, photo title, a description of the photo and the date it was taken.

Click or touch here for full terms and conditions. The competition ends 12.00am February 28

Deflation a serious threat to investors

Posted on 22/08/2019 by

Low inflation in China is bad news for Asia Photo: David Rowe ‘We have no historic precedent to draw upon and asset pricing is moving in uncharted waters.’ Photo: Dorothy Woodgate
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Deflation is the “most likely” scenario for most of the developed world, according to a gloomy note from Sydney-based Clime Asset Management, while Fidelity and HSBC have also echoed their concern about the spectre of falling prices.

Clime said the outlook for the world’s developed economies was one of lower growth and low inflation.

“We would therefore speculate that the most likely economic scenario for most of the developed world is deflation. A re-run of Japan’s decades of low growth but on a grander worldwide scale.”

Deflation is characterised by falling prices, as opposed to inflation, which is defined as rising prices. Economists consider deflation a threat because it increases the real value of debt and may aggravate recessions through a deflationary spiral.

Clime stated that the “inflexion point into this low growth era has been passed” and markets were realising that investment returns were going to be single-digit and consistent with low economic growth. The World Bank last week downgraded growth forecasts.

Clime said that “this economic period and the economic settings are unique in world economic history … we have no historic precedent to draw upon and asset pricing is moving in uncharted waters.”

Dominic Rossi, Fidelity’s Global CIO equities, also argued that deflation was likely – but unlike Clime, put the blame on emerging economies.

“Global equity markets are battling the third wave of deflation since 2008,” Mr Rossi told Fairfax Media.

“The epicentre now is not within the developed world nor the financial system but within the developing world and the global manufacturing sector, where capital allocation has been poor and where overcapacity is rife. A crisis in emerging currency markets has flagged these problems for 18 months.”

Mr Rossi said the catalyst for deflation was the Chinese yuan, falls in which will further deflate the demand for commodities and traded goods.

“Inflationary pressures will correspondingly remain tame to non-existent.”

Central banks in Europe and Japan would continue their “ultra-loose” monetary policies, while the Federal Reserve and the Bank of England faced the possibility of backtracking on their interest rate hiking cycles.

“Pressure…to raise interest rates will surely wane,” said Mr Rossi.

HSBC’s paper, “Feeling deflated still”, pointed out that China’s annual inflation result of 1.6 per cent, released on the weekend, was bad news for Asia.

“Sliding inflation poses a major headache for policy-makers in Asia,” said HSBC.

“First, it makes the already high level of debt harder to service, hurting demand. Second, it reduces the potency of any further monetary stimulus. Marginal rate cuts may still arrive in the coming months, including in Korea, China, Indonesia, , New Zealand and India. But they’ll not pack much punch.”

The paper cited HSBC’s chief China economist, Qu Hongbin, who argues that without “aggressive reflation” the drag on demand of falling inflation will only increase.

But monetary easing faced two constraints, the paper said.

“First, in many economies interest rates are already at such low levels that they leave little room for meaningful cuts (think Korea, Thailand, Taiwan). Second, with the Fed hiking and exchange rate volatility on the rise, overly aggressive easing could precipitate capital outflows, which would tighten, rather than ease, overall financial conditions.

“Conventional monetary policy is approaching its limits in much of Asia.”

That left fiscal policy.

“Government debt in much of the region (though not everywhere, such as in Japan, India, or Malaysia) appears low enough that pump priming remains an option. Qu Hongbin, for one, expects a meaningful fiscal boost in China this year. But elsewhere, with the exception of Japan, counter-cyclical fiscal policy is rarely a preferred tool, with the authorities generally pursuing a relatively conservative approach, often hemmed in by legal or self-imposed fiscal rules.”

Lang’s Creek Yass last refuge for endangered southern pygmy perch

Posted on 22/08/2019 by

Conservationist Phillip Fowler on his property near Blakney Creek, north-east of Yass. Photo: Graham Tidy A Southern Pygmy Perch. Photo: Luke Pearce
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A little creek smothered in bulrushes harbours a rare native fish that is consuming much of Phillip Fowler’s time.

The conservationist became engrossed in Lang’s Creek about 12 years ago, while helping Landcare friends plant trees there. Mr Fowler brought Rockview, a 120-hectare property in 2008, which includes 1.2 kilometres of the creek’s head waters.

North-east of Yass, the spring-fed creek flows into Blakney Creek and the Lachlan River, and NSW Fisheries are trying to stock creeks in the area with the endangered pygmy perch, which were found more than a decade ago in small pools during the drought.

Fisheries researcher Luke Pearce says the nine-centimetre perch was once so common throughout the Murray catchment a 1970s fishing book recommended it as live bait for trout.

Now it is found in only three places in NSW, including Blakney Creek, where it is fast losing ground to noxious redfin. In 2007, pygmy perch were in a 25-kilometre section of the creek, in 2009 this was reduced to 15 kilometres, in 2013, 12 kilometres.

“It just astounds me that some people still believe the redfin is a native fish,” Mr Pearce said. He said the introduced predator had been found in a section of Lang’s Creek.

Further east on the Lachlan River, fat-lamb producer and Landcare stalwart Vince Heffernan says some landholders would not know or care whether fish were in their creeks.

“Those creeks are the last pockets of the vast Murray Darling Basin that are in exceptionally good condition. They have a huge number of aquatic plants in them. In one pond you might find 20 different species of aquatic plants, and that’s what gives cover to things like the southern pygmy perch,” he said.

Mr Heffernan says a new, merged Landcare group was prioritising the plight of the pygmy perch. In rare places it appeared, other species like turtles, crayfish and waterbirds not seen elsewhere were likely to be living as well.

“It is not about one fish, it is the health of an entire freshwater riparian ecosystem, really,” he said.

Mr Fowler believes the absence of trout, carp and redfin has allowed the perch to thrive in his section of Lang’s Creek, but is worried about redfin. The Commonwealth Department of Environment biodiversity fund allocated $24,000 to Mr Fowler in 2012 to protect and enhance his patch of the creek.

“If you leave the bush [un-grazed] it will re-revegetate itself,” Mr Fowler says. “It has been doing it for at least 100,000 years, and is much better than us re-vegetating.

“Same with the creek, if you take away the grazing animals and erosion, it will do it itself, and that is what is happening,” he said. Over time he hopes to cover the bare, eroded patches on the banks, which he reckons have so much acid their pH equivalent would be close to battery acid.

Cassinia and silver wattle are taking hold on the rock-hard banks. Bare gullies have been softened over recent years with dumps of hay to improve the soil.

Mr Fowler’s toughest battle is with blackberries, which he has burned and slashed. He will not use chemical spray. “This is 100 per cent organic landcare,” he says. Where blackberries have been cut back, pioneer trees like the wattle begin to grow.

“In the long run, the economic benefits will be exponential, just like the biodiversity benefits. We are having little or no creek erosion. For seven years we have been managing the land, the main threat is erosion, sedimentation and pollution,” Mr Fowler said.