Wednesday, May 11, 2011

My Edible Bouquets

So this past weekend was Mother's Day, and being as broke as I am, I had to get a little creative with me Mother's Day gift. Always wanting to buy an Edible Arrangement, I dabbled around on their website contemplating buying one of these for my mom. After wearing off the initial shock from discovery the hefty $75 price tag for one of those things, I thought I was going to have to settle for one of those $3 Sunflower bouquets at Trader Joe's. Hey! Fruit at the grocery store is cheap too! I can make one of those Edible Arrangements myself! Doesn't look that hard. I decided to document my process of making one of these things in case anyone else out there doesn't want to cough up $75 for a basket fruit and wants to try doing it themselves.

The fruits I purchased were pineapple, green apples, strawberries, grapes, and cantaloupes. You can also get chocolate if you want for dipping. Other items you'll need is some sort of pot, styrofoam designed for flower arrangements, bbq skewers, a flower shaped cookie cutter and one of those cantaloupe scoops. All of this you can get Micheal's for fairly cheap (except for maybe the styrofoam). First I started with the pineapple. Cut it in thin slices going from right to left. The particular cookie cutter I had on hand fit perfectly within each circular pineapple cutout. Cute flower shaped pineapple pieces came out perfectly!

Next I started on the cantaloupe. I cute it in half and used one half to cut out crescent shaped slices, and the other half to scoop out tiny balls to act as the center for the pineapple flower. I meant to get green cantaloupe so the slices would look like leafs. The orange ones worked okay too. I think they looked nicer as the centers for the pineapple flowers. The cantaloupe were one of the more difficult fruits I had to deal with when it came to skewering, but I'll talk about that later.

Next came the green apples. The apples are also cut into slices. You would think we'd stay away from fruit that would oxidize, but we had a solution to that! We melted the chocolate and coated the exposed areas of the apple to prevent it from browning. The apples should be patted dry before attempting to dip it. Actually, instead of dipping (which we quickly found out doesn't turn out very pretty), try using a spreading knife to give it a nice even coat. Be sure to stick it on the skewer first before applying the chocolate.

The grapes and the strawberries were the easy ones to prepare. Wash em, cut the tops off the strawberries and they're ready for skewering! Ready the pot with the styrofoam inside. The type of styrofoam you'll need will be cone shaped because the fruit is so heavy, it'll need the extra reinforcement. The pineapple was one of the easier ones. Just skewer right through the center, and stick the cantaloupe piece on top.
The cantaloupe slices are a bit trickier. Use two skewers to stick down the middle- face the crescent mouth facing in. It'll slide all over the place if you try using only one. The apples stick well with only one skewer, but be careful about messing up the chocolate/ touching the other fruit in the pot. Have the green side face out so it resembles a leaf. Grapes are super easy. You can get creative with how you want to arrange them. As for the strawberries, expect them to slip and slide all over the place. I tried reinforcing the strawberry skewers by using a grape at the base, which worked out pretty well. Try using two skewers as well. After a few sticks into the styrofoam, you'll soon find out that you're not gonna the pot nearly as full as the edible arrangements you see in the ads, but they still turn out quite pretty. I'll need to figure out a way to put more skewers in without the fruit hitting each other.

And finally, my Mother's Day presentation! Leave your feedback please!

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