Are you looking for tips on How to Make Fruit Platters and Trays?
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Perhaps you have been asked to bring a Platter of Fresh Fruit to an event to which you have been invited, or maybe you plan on preparing a Fruit Tray for your own get-together.
Fruit platters are great food ideas to accompany outdoor barbeque dinners and picnics. And...don't forget the fruit dip!
Making your own fruit arrangement is far superior to purchasing a store-made fruit tray.
Not only will making your own tray of fruit be cheaper, it will be fresher, better quality, and you can choose whatever fruits you like to include and how many different varieties of fruit you are going to use.
The first thing you need to consider is approximately how many people your platter of fruit needs to serve.
This will determine the size of the fruit platter you will use.
Next, you need to decide if you want to use a store purchased platter (discount, or "dollar stores" often sell the disposable plastic trays with clear, raised lids), or your own plastic tray with ready-made compartments for the different fruits, or a more elegant, ceramic fruit platter.
Whichever platter you choose for presentation, you will need to have a lid, or plastic wrap to keep it covered till serving time.
Whatever type of tray or platter you choose, ensure that it has a large enough "lip" or edge around it to catch any escaping fruit juices.
This is especially important if you are bringing the platter elsewhere.
I would suggest that the type of platter you use will depend on the event.
If you are preparing the platter of fruit for a more formal event, serving fewer people, where you are also using good dinnerware, etc. you may want to use a fancy platter.
For most events however, a plastic disposable, or other plastic fruit tray is your best choice.
If you are making multiple fruit platters for events such as Weddings, Anniversaries, Graduations, and so on, I recommend purchasing the disposable platters, and making them all identical to one another.
Are you making a fruit tray for a crowd of about 25 people?
Here is an example of the fruit tray I made for a crowd of about 25 people.
To create fruit platters for more people, you can simply make additional trays.
For Instructions How to Make the above Fruit Platter,
GO to Fruit Tray for a Crowd
If you are making a fruit tray for a Bridal or Wedding Shower or a Baby Shower, check out the Rainbow Fruit Tray I created for my daughter's Bridal Shower!
GO to How to Make a Rainbow Fruit Tray
If you do not have a special "fruit platter" to use, you can easily use a regular serving tray. The tray can be used as it is, or covered with aluminum foil, a plastic disposable plastic table cover, or covered in gift wrap, and then covered in clear (food saver) wrap.
Personally, if I am asked to bring a food platter to an event, I like to use a disposable tray so that when I leave the party, I do not need to ask for my tray to take back home with me, especially when I may leave before the tray is entirely empty!
Next, you should decide on what types of fruit you will include.
Write down the fruits that you will purchase and where you plan to buy them.
Purchase the fruit just prior to the date you need the platter for.
Fruit should be ripe, but not overripe.
Take advantage of fruit types which are in season at the time, and use greater quantities of these.
The advantage is that, being fresh, local, and properly ripened, they will taste the best, and fruit in season is usually less expensive.
Consider adding Food Flair to your fresh fruit platter by including chocolate raspberries, (see picture above).
If you are including raspberries as part of your fruit tray, you could add the chocolate chips to the berries, or you add a side dish full of chocolate raspberries.
This idea will be sure to add pizzazz to your fruit presentation, and will certainly be a conversation piece!
If I make a fruit tray that is about 18" in diameter, I would use about 5 different fruits. There is no rule about this though...you can use as many as you like!
How long before you plan to serve the fruit can you make the fruit tray?
Most of the fruit should be purchased as close to the date of the event as possible. The day of, or the day before is best.
You can make the entire tray the day of the event, by washing the fruit, cutting it up, and arranging it on the tray, and then keeping the platter chilled, and covered, until serving time.
Another option is to prepare the fruit a little ahead of time, and keep it in separate containers in the fridge (covered), and then closer to the event, transfer it to the tray or platter. I would advise you not to arrange the fruit on the platter more than 24 hours before you plan to serve it.
Either of the two above methods is fine, however, some fruits must be prepared immediately before serving the tray. Apples, bananas, peaches and pears are example of fruit which cannot be prepared ahead of time because they will turn brown and begin to deteriorate.
In the event that you are bringing the fruit tray to a party, you will want to take the apples, bananas, peaches and pears unpeeled, and peel them and add them to the fruit tray just prior to serving. If you do not want this added responsibility at the party...choose other fruits instead of these.
Also, see these amazing pictures of great ideas for Garnishing with Fruit:
GO to Garnishing With Fruit
Tip: Lightly sprinkle lemon juice, or "fruit fresh" over the sliced apples, bananas, peaches and pears, before adding them to the tray to slow down the browning process. Many people avoid using these types of fruit because of their tendency to brown. You will be the best judge of the choices you make for the fruit selection for the fruit tray you will create.
Tip: If you plan to use apples, remember that some varieties of apples have a greater tendency to brown quicker than others. For example, "Cortland" is a variety of apple that is a good choice for a fruit platter as it does not tend to discolour as quickly as some other varieties of apples.
GO to How to Help Prevent Apples from Turning Brown
Make all the cut fruit roughly the same, bite-size pieces. You can use a melon baller for the melons or a zig-zag type of fruit slicer to jazz up the fruit tray if you wish.
When you place the fruit on the serving platter, you can do so by arranging the fruit in an organized or a random arrangement.
If you choose an organized arrangement, arrange the fruit evenly around the plate, or in the case of a square tray, do so in a square pattern.
If you choose a random arrangement of the fruit, simply place the different fruit types randomly around the tray.
You can also use an organized arrangement, and then place small berries, such as blueberries, sprinkled over just the melon and pineapple for a special effect.
Try and arrange the fruit with colours that contrast with each other. For example, red strawberries look amazing beside yellow pineapple, and bright green kiwi or green grapes look great beside red raspberries, etc. Make the tray look appealing, colourful and luscious!
I like to arrange the fruit (on either a round, square, rectangle, or oblong platter) around the bowl of fruit dip.
If you are planning on having the fruit dip in a bowl separate from the fruit platter itself, find another "focal point" for the fruit tray. This can whole, unpeeled fruit, a display of an exotic fruit, a decorative holder for toothpicks to use with the fruit, a mini bouquet of fresh or artificial flowers, or anything else that gives the fruit platter "balance".
You can also use some of the discarded parts of the cut-up fruit. For example, you can put the leaves of the pineapple in the center, or hollow out the bottom of a pineapple or a melon, and fill it with blueberries or nuts. If you are preparing multiple fruit platters, I suggest that you use the same focal point for all of the trays.
Be creative...it is amazing what you will come up with. All fruit trays are unique...that is what makes them so pleasing to the eye...and the taste buds!:)
And, don't forget the fruit dip!
GO to FRUIT DIP Recipes
Interested in Making Fresh Fruit Kabobs?
GO to How to Make FRUIT KABOBS
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