A carved fruit or vegetable can take a humdrum meal and make it something memorable. Although carved fruits and vegetables can look complicated and difficult, they aren't as hard to make as a novice would imagine. Indeed, every time that you cut celery and carrots into more dippable sticks, you are making rudimentary versions of carved fruit and vegetable displays.
The size of the watermelon makes it a candidate to be turned into a basket to hold pieces of other fruits and balls of melon. Use a sharp knife to lightly score the outline for the design on the surface of your watermelon. Then carefully cut away the rind to be removed, using your scoring as a guide. Scoop out the flesh of the watermelon with a melon baller. Fill the watermelon with the watermelon balls along with other fruit pieces. Your basket can be simple, shaped simply like a oval bowl, or it can have more fanciful features, like a basket handle or a whale's tail arching over part of the cavity.
Cucumber and Carrot Lotus Flower
Cut a cucumber into three equal sections. Take one of the two end sections and hold it so that the cut side is facing you. First, you will cut in the outer layer of petals. Make cuts along the outside of the cucumber about 1/8 inch into the flesh of the cucumber extending down nearly to the bottom, making eight equally sized cuts. Make your inner layer of eight petals by repeating the technique on the interior flesh of the cucumber. You should have 16 petals. Cut out the remaining interior seeds and flesh. Carve the petals so that they each come to a point. Peel a carrot and cut off a disc, about 1/4 inch thick. Place this disc in the center of your cucumber.
Choose a large, bright red tomato. Cut off the bottom of the tomato in a very thin slice. Take a very sharp knife and peel the tomato in one long continuous, even stroke, spiraling down the tomato. Roll the peel and arrange it on the slice of tomato on a plate as a garnish.