Thursday, January 24, 2008

Choices, Choices, Choices

I have so many ideas for posts that I'm kind of stuck on which one to go with. First, I suppose I should show you where the magic happens. Yep, that's my tiny kitchen with Mike demonstrating excatly how tiny it is. It's a miracle I can even make a bowl of cereal in a room so miniscule. FYI: the fridge and the oven cannot be open at the same time.

Okay, now on to what you're really here for. In October, I had the privilege of hosting a baby shower for my good friend Meredith. It was my first shower, but I was very excited about it. The menu was baby themed and complete with some fun food crafts. Here's what I served:

Fruit salad in a baby carriage
Baby Spinach and Artichoke Dip with Baby carrots and other veggies
Sugar and Spice-y Thai Noodle Salad over Baby Greens and Bib Lettuce
(with grilled sesame Chicken or Shrimp)
"Naughty" and "Nice" Punch
Rice Krispy Treat Rattles

The Baby Carriage Watermelon
This endeavor was much easier than I had anticipated, and the next time I do this, I will get a little more elaborate. The bigger/longer the watermelon, the better, in my opinion.

How To:

1. With the watermelon laying on it's side, begin to make a cut downward, about 1/3 in from the end, but only go halfway down.

2. Then from the far end of the watermelon, make a cut in towards the middle, as if you were cutting it in half lengthwise. The second cut should be perpendicular to the first. Basically, you are cutting out the top 2/3 of the watermelon (see picture).

3. Remove the portion of the watermelon that you just cut. Save this, as you can carve the fruit out of it to be used in your fruit salad.

4. Carve the fruit from the rind. A large spoon works well for scraping the sides.

5. Tie a ribbon (pink or blue or whatever color you prefer) around the length of the watermelon. You may need a bit of hot glue to hold it in place.

6. Using toothpicks, attach orange slices to the base of the watermelon to serve as wheels. When displaying the carriage, you'll want to put someting under it to boost the watermelon up so the wheels can hang down. I put a cookbook under the table cloth.

7. Fill with fruit salad.

Next time I make it, I would probably leave a "handle" for the carriage and also scallop the edges of the carriage to make it a little fancier.

Rice Krispy Treat Rattles

1. Mix rice krispy treats according to the standard recipe. When mixing, add in pink or blue food coloring.

2. Roll the rice krispy's into two sized balls--one about a tennis ball size, the other about golf-ball size. (It helps if you moisten your hands to keep it from sticking.)

3. Slide a lolly-pop stick (available at Wal-Mart) through the two balls, so the big ball is at one end and the smaller ball is just below it. (see picture).

4. I put these in plastic goodie bags and tied them off with "It's a Girl" ribbon (also at Wal-Mart) because they were going home as favors. If you're serving them right away, you can tie the ribbon onto the stick and forgo the bag altogether.

Next time, I will be sure to use more food coloring. These turned out pink, but not as bright as I was hoping for. I also think that chilling the mix before molding it might have made it easier.

I've also got some great baby shower game ideas and cute decorations. If you're interested, feel free to leave a comment with your email address and I can send you more ideas.

Bon Appetit!
The Food Whore

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