Bring an extra splash of red, white and blue to your Fourth of July table with a watermelon boat. Watermelon boats are relatively easy to carve and add a decorative touches, and you can fill them with any number of seasonal fruit combinations. For a patriotic melon, add blueberries and bananas to watermelon balls. Grapes and coconut will do the trick too.
Choose a smooth, ripe melon with no wrinkles, blemishes or bruises. Do not refrigerate until after cutting, as watermelons are more easily carved at room temperature.
Before you carve, decide what design you will use along the edge. The most common are scalloped and saw-tooth patterns. Draw the pattern directly on the melon or make a template from construction paper.
Wash the watermelon and then cut a thin, flat piece from the bottom. This will keep the watermelon stable while you carve.
Tape or draw your design two inches from the center of the melon. Use a long knife with a sharp blade to cut all the way through, along the pattern. Remove the top part of the melon.
Remove fruit from both sections with the melon baller. The remaining shell should be one inch thick. Do not puncture the rind. Put fruit in a bowl. Cover and refrigerate until ready to serve. Drain the shell.
Return the melon balls to your boat. Add other fruits, dressings or garnishes to suit your taste and the occasion.
Carving a melon can be messy and slippery business. In order to keep a tight grip and to protect your hands, wear either rubber kitchen or gardening gloves.