Edible Fruit Bouquet
At the center of each holiday is a traditional meal: for Jews, the Passover Seder, and for Christians, the Easter Brunch. Here is a festive, healthy spring fruit dish that can grace either table, and that makes a lovely hostess gift. It’s especially fun for young kids, for whom there’s even an added learning bonus: preparations include cutting shapes and assembling them in patterns…a key skill for young mathematicians!
What You Need:
- 1 large grapefruit (or pomelo, if its available in your area)—at least 6” in diameter
- 1 honeydew or canteloupe melon
- About 12-15 medium-sized strawberries, hulls removed
- Fresh pineapple, cut into slabs 1/3” thick
- 24-30 Short (~7”) bamboo skewers (usually used for barbecue)
- Two cookie cutters: one round, about 1-3/4” in diameter, and one flower shaped, with 4 or 5 petals, about 1-1/2” in diameter. (Note: if you don’t have a flower shape already, you can make one by cutting a clean tin can and bending it to shape).
- Bunch of fresh mint, if available (lettuce will do in a pinch)
- One decorative bowl, roughly the diameter of your grapefruit, with sides at least 2-3” high
What You Do:
- Start by cleaning all your fruit and greens thoroughly—even the outsides of your melons can carry bacteria! Then, cut hulls off your strawberries, leaving the berries themselves whole. Carve all rind off the pineapple, and cut it into large slabs, about 1/3” thick. Then cut the melon in half, remove seeds, and gently pull the flesh out of the shell. Cut the melon into ½” slabs, as long and wide as possible.
- Use the flower cookie cutter to cut 12-15 flowers from your melon (or as much as your melon will allow). Set the leftover fruit aside for delicious fruit salad snacks. Use the round cookie cutter to cut 12-15 disks from the pineapple.
- Now prepare your bowl. Start by cutting your grapefruit in half. Place one half, flesh side down and rind side up, into the bowl.
- Stick the blunt end of a pointed bamboo skewer through each of your melon flowers, lengthwise, and leave a ½” tip at the top for people to grab. Then, with the remaining skewers, stick the blunt end through the center of a round pineapple disk and then lengthwise through a strawberry, to create a fruit design that looks like a budding flower. Again, leave a ½” tip at the top for people to grab. Note: if your child is like mine, this stage is tons of fun.
- Now, alternating fruit “flowers,” stick the pointed end of each skewer “stem” into the upended grapefruit rind. You will see a luscious fruit “bouquet” take shape. When you’re done, stick mint sprigs around the grapefruit as a finishing touch, and serve with pride!