We're taught from an early age that heavy things, which are usually big things, sink to the bottom. Yet whenever you open a can of mixed nuts, the Brazil nuts always seem to be sitting on top, as if to say, "hello there—you didn't think the biggest nuts in the can would be sitting on top of smaller nuts waiting to greet you, challenging your concept of physics and the natural world, wouldn't you?" (Or is that voice just in my head?) Science has the answer.
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Celebrate Earth Day with a handful of Brazil nuts. Not only are they delicious, but farming them is eco-friendly.
"I can't remember ever seeing Brazil nuts in anything besides a bowl of mixed nuts." Brazil nuts at Campo dei Fiori in Rome. [Photograph: Lee Zalben] I was in Italy not too long ago when I came across this interesting-looking snack. Intrigued by the words noci brasiliane, I realized I was looking at a granola bar made with Brazil nuts, something I'd never seen before. As the name would suggest, the Brazil nut tree grows in South America. The nuts are somewhat high in saturated fat, which I presume is why they're not promoted as being "heart healthy" the way peanuts and some tree nuts are. Brazil nuts have always intrigued me—the shell itself is so mysterious-looking. Then there's their...