Double, double, toil and trouble. I made these jack-o-lantern fruit bowls for snack time and the kids are eating up their berries like hungry little goblins!
We have been inundated with SO many candy treats lately. I let the boys indulge quite a bit, but I also like to show them how we can create balance with healthier Halloween snacks like this. A little sugar now and again is no big deal to me, but I want them to see that as a small side supplement to nature's own sweets like berries and honey and fruit.
- One apple
- One pie pumpkin
- One large Red Vine
- One small Red Vine
- 4-5 cups mixed berries
Carve the apple and pie pumpkin out with a melon baller or pie-carving tools.
Fill each with berries.
Add the Red Vines as "handles" to complete the jack-o-lantern look.
The apple was easy to hollow out with a melon baller, and I busted out our seasonal pumpkin carving tools to make the face (though a small knife probably would have worked just as well). That sugar-looking dust you see next to it is actually True Citrus sprinkles. I use their pouches to flavor my water and I'm also a HUGE fan of their crystallized lemon and lime for use in recipes. Sprinkle a little of that on a cut apple, and it won't brown as quickly. Same trick works with fresh lemon, too!
I used a pie pumpkin for a slightly-bigger centerpiece, but didn't carve the face because it's hard to get a clean cut on a pie pumpkin. The little pie pumpkins that you find at the grocery store tend to be more difficult to carve than the large jack-o-lantern pumpkins found at the pumpkin patches. The pulp is stringier and harder to get out of a pie pumpkin, which is meant to be sliced into chunks and baked for puree. If you tried baking a jack-o-lantern pumpkin, you'd probably just wind up with a gross watery-pumpkin mound.
Red Vines (mini for the apple and regular-sized for the pumpkin) serve as cute “handles” to finish it off. I actually partnered with Red Vines to create this project specifically for Instagram, but I couldn't resist sharing it over here as well!
I found that the pie pumpkin, once emptied of its seeds, started to brown quite. Probably since it has lower water content than carving pumpkins, there was nothing to help slow down the drying-out process. So you'll want to fill that sucker with berries, serve it immediately and then pop the pumpkin pieces in the oven if you intend to turn it into pie puree. This way, the whole food craft is edible from beginning-to-end. Great way to show the kids a fun, tasty activity where nothing is wasted.
What Halloween treats are you cooking up this year?