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How To Carve A Fruit Basket

June 23, 2010

 fruit basket

yumm fruit  who carved that sexy basket

It’s summertime!

I mean really. Finally. For me, too! My last exam is done and out of the way and I have six weeks of work and sunshine before heading to the hill.

I thought that in honor of my first afternoon of real, pure summer I would post a seasonal how-to. Fruit Baskets are awesome.

  • They’re a great gift
  • They utilize all the sweet fruit of the season
  • They’re fun for kids
  • They make eating produce more exciting
  • They’re easy and impressive

This is a comprehensive step by step guide for the art of melon carving. Try to follow the steps, you can improvise a little but if you actually measure then you will come out with a beautiful, even, sturdy basket every time. Ready to get started?

IMG_1753 IMG_1754

You will need:

  • A melon baller or measuring spoon
  • A large sharp knife
  • A small sharp knife
  • A pan for garbage
  • A tape measurer
  • A sharpie (preferably green)

step1 copy

Equator height.

Roughly measure the “height” of your watermelon. Divide by two.

Ex. Mine was 10 inches high, so I wrote down 5 for my equator height.

Make a dotted line about 5 inches up around the melon. Connect it.


step2 copy

Equator length.

Find the “buttons” of the melon. Measure from button to button on each side. If it’s a different measurement for each, it’s okay. Write on each side of the button how long the half equator was.


If your half height line does not cut through the buttons it needs to be higher. Raise it up so there is an even line from button to button on each side about half the height up.

Now measure an additional inch up from the equator and make a dot every so often as you go around the melon. Connect the dots using the tape as a straight edge.

IMG_1777step3 copy

Handle placement.

Take your half equator measurement from each side and subtract 2 inches. Then divide by 2.

Ex. Mine was 17 on one side and 18 on the other.

Side 1: (L1-2)/2= (17-2)/2= 7.5

Side 2: (L2-2)/2= (18-2)/2= 8

On side 1 measure 7.5 inches to the center. Make a mark. Repeat from opposite button.

Do the same thing on the other side, but use 8 inches this time.

(Note: replace the red number with the number that you personally measured for your own melon.)


step4 copy

Now draw a line over the top of the basket from each mark to the corresponding mark on the other side.

step5 copy

Now it’s time to use a knife. With the small knife cut along the red line shown in the above diagram.

The small knife will not be enough to pull the section out. Retrace your cut with the big knife. (If you start with the big knife it’s really easy to make a mistake and cut through the handle.)


Cut out the flesh under the handle with the small knife.


step6 copy

Mellon baller time! Scoop out balls of watermelon until they stop looking pretty, then just cut out chunks. Scrape out the entire inside.


Drill a little hole with the small knife in the bottom of the melon for drainage later on.step7 copy

This is where you can get creative! For your basic zig-zag melon basket, cut a one inch triangle from your 1” cut line down to the equator line. You don’t have to do zig zags. You can cut little notches, waves, etc.

step8 copy

Use this piece as the guideline for the rest of the zig zags. You can also zig zag the handle, or make it a wave… have fun!

IMG_1819 IMG_1820

step9 copy

Yay!  Your basket looks beautiful! Remember those two big chunks we cut from each side in the beginning? If you cut all the melon off of those they can serve as “boosters” for the fruit, so no delicate produce is under too much pressure.


Store your basket this way under plastic wrap until you’re ready to serve or gift it. Then just fill it up with a mix of fruit and put it out for guest with a serving spoon and toothpicks.


Tutorials on how to cut up all the fruit add ins are coming.

As you practice, you’ll be carving baskets in minutes. Next whales. Maybe even carriages? other options       

My next project: watermelon snails. 🙂


This post was so much fun to make but took for ever! My Photoshop skills are coming along. 🙂

6 Comments leave one →
  1. June 23, 2010 3:32 am

    VERY impressive! Looks awesome!

  2. June 23, 2010 4:20 am

    Woah! It is all so scientific!
    Very cool though 🙂

  3. Little Bookworm permalink
    June 23, 2010 4:20 am

    Fantastic how-to! It looks fantastic. 🙂

  4. June 23, 2010 5:07 am

    Gorgeous!! Fabulous how-to!! Thank you so much!! Maybe one day I’ll be brave enough to try it out myself!! 🙂

  5. June 23, 2010 8:32 am

    Wow girl, that’s pretty sweet!


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