Italian Airport Makes Pesto Sauce an Exception to the Liquids Ban


Taking a piece of famous cuisine home from Genoa, Italy just got easier for tourists. As the Associated Press reports, people flying out of the city are now allowed to pack up to 500 grams of pesto in their carry-on bags.

Before the change was made on June 1, travelers enamored with the basil pine nut sauce the city is known for had to store jars in their checked baggage if they wanted to take some home. And if they were unfortunate enough to forget the airport’s 100-milliliter rule for carry-ons, that tasty souvenir was seized at security—something the airport said has happened hundreds of times.

That’s no longer an issue with Genoa’s new airport waiver. According to the BBC, flyers packing pesto can pay €0.50 (roughly $0.55) for a sticker to label their jars. All proceeds go to a charity that transports sick children to hospitals by airlift. In the three weeks since its introduction, the program has raised more than $550 for the cause.

Airport security is still strict when it comes to other liquid Italian specialties, as well as jars of pesto that don’t meet the standards (it has to be genuine Genovese pesto to qualify for the exemption).

[h/t AP]

How Microwaving Food Affects Its Nutritional Value


There’s probably no household appliance that sees more use than a microwave. For people who don’t have the time or inclination to prepare dinners from scratch or heat meals in a conventional oven, zapping food has become the ultimate method of time management in the kitchen.

Some people harbor the belief that a price has to be paid for that convenience—specifically, that food loses nutritional value by being subjected to a quick nuking.

The truth? Microwaving doesn’t harm a food’s nutrients. In fact, it may preserve them more than some slow-cook methods do.

The reason is found in how microwaves work. The appliances heat food by blasting it with waves of energy not unlike radio waves. These waves target water and other molecules in the food. Thermal energy quickly builds up, and dishes come out heated in a relatively short period of time. This process avoids two of the factors that can lead to nutrient loss: cooking duration and high temperatures. Typically, the longer and hotter food is cooked, the more its nutritional value dissipates.

The other advantage is that microwaves don’t require water for heating. If you boil broccoli, for example, the hot water allows nutrients to leach out of the vegetable. (While that makes for a good stock, your broccoli may be robbed of some of its healthy benefits.) A quick steam in the microwave leaves broccoli relatively intact.

That’s not to say that microwave cooking is superior to a stovetop. Cooking foods at reasonable temperatures and durations shouldn’t result in significant nutrient loss, though some is inevitable for any manner of cooking. But microwaving isn’t going to erase nutrients via some mysterious microwave alchemy, either.

[h/t CNN]

Golden Girls Cereal Has Arrived


Fans of The Golden Girls can now spend their mornings with Dorothy, Blanche, Sophia, and Rose. The ladies of the beloved sitcom now have their own cereal—and it's only available for a limited time, Today reports.

Funko—the toy company known for its vinyl Pop! dolls depicting nearly every character in pop culture (including, of course, The Golden Girls)—rolled out the special-edition cereal in Target stores on September 30. The box is decorated with Funko-fied versions of the four leading ladies, and the multi-grain loops themselves are a shade of deep blue that would look great on one of Rose's dresses.

At $8 a box, the product is more expensive than your average breakfast cereal, but that price includes a little something extra. Each box of Golden Girls cereal comes with its own version of a prize inside: a Funko Pop! figurine of one of the four women.

The cereal won't remain on shelves forever, so collect all the dolls while you still can.

[h/t Today]