Spooky, silly or symbolic; carved pumpkins are an essential ingredient to any Halloween celebration. However, this year why not scare up some special fun for your party with a wicked watermelon carving instead?
After crafting your watermelon into an artful effigy, take advantage of the healthy, immune system-supporting qualities of this lycopene leader among fresh produce. At 92 per cent water, as well as an excellent source of vitamins A and C, watermelon is a hydrating post-art snack.
Carving a creative design into a watermelon is a simple way to kick off the festivities, and requires only a handful of common tools. Add a twinkling candle to make a fantastically frightful centrepiece or fill it with a fresh fruit salad or salsas for a more functional, practical approach. Find more recipes, carving patterns and inspiration at watermelon.org. – Family Features
With a thick rind covering the fruit inside, you may wonder how to choose the best watermelon at the market. Here are some tips for picking the perfect one:
Supplies and Tools:
Wash watermelon under cool running water and pat dry.
On a cutting board, place the watermelon on its side and use a kitchen knife to cut off 0.5cm to 1.25cm from the bottom (end opposite stem) while taking care to avoid cutting too deep into the white part of the rind.
Cut 1.25cm to 2cm from the stem end to create an opening large enough to fit a small bowl.
Using a dry erase marker, draw eyes, nose and a mouth, along with wavy slits around the carving to let more light flow through. Use a paring knife to cut out the design, being sure to cut through to the red fruit.
Use a fluted or regular melon baller to hollow out the inside of the watermelon. Use a scoop to remove excess watermelon.
Peel the green rind off outside the watermelon.
(Tip: Different peelers work well for different parts of the watermelon, depending on how flat or round the melon is).
Wrap thin strips of cheesecloth around the effigy carving and secure with a straight pin, if needed.
Put a battery-operated candle or light into the carving. Fit a small bowl into the top of the carving and trim away the excess rind to make the bowl fit securely. Fill the bowl with melon balls and attach sweets or blueberries to make eyes with.
Note: To serve with toothpicks, place these in before freezing to help in serving.