It is both a hospitality and business custom to leave a fruit basket for VIPs and other special visitors. However, fruit baskets can be a great gift for anyone at anytime of the year. Fruit baskets are a healthy food-related gift that will impress your friends, neighbors, clients or co-workers. Fruit baskets can be made quite extravagantly, but they also can be easy to make, yet still thoughtful, beautiful gifts.
Choose a container that will hold the fruit. Because it's a fruit basket, the most logical choice would be to use a basket. However, there are many different types of containers available, in many different styles, that can add that extra touch of class to your gift. Glassware or pottery would really impress your recipient. Check out your local discount store to find a container for your edible gift.
Keep two main points in mind: the length of time before the fruit will be consumed and what fruit is in season. If there will be more than a day or two between the making and the consumption of the fruit basket, choose fruits that last well such as bananas, kiwis, small melons, apples, oranges, uncut pineapple and pears. If the basket will be consumed soon after being made, or if there is a way to keep the basket refrigerated, consider fruits such as strawberries, blueberries, raspberries, blackberries and more exotic fruits.
Keep seasonal fruit in mind. Not all fruits are available all the time. Many are offered year round but are often shipped from other countries, which makes them less fresh. Choosing fresh, local fruit will increase the quality and freshness, and it will also help your local economy.
Fruit bruises easily. It is important to protect the fruit with packaging, and it also adds style and a nice presentation. Choose packaging that will complement the look you are going for. Paper shreds and other decorative packing material are easily found at your local shopping center or party supply store. Arrange the fruit with the taller fruit toward the back of the basket and taper the height down to the front of the basket. You can give specific items height by placing more packing material underneath the fruit. Be sure to pack the fruit so they will not move around while being delivered; the added movement could cause bruising as well as ruin the presentation.
There are many wonderful edible items that can complement the fruit in your basket. Local wines from the area, fruit-flavored candies and specialty chocolates can take your basket from good to great. Buy from local businesses that offer goodies that cannot be found anywhere else.
Wrap the entire basket with plastic wrap, or leave it open and tie a couple decorative ribbons around it. Don't forget to leave a note card with a special message on it for the recipient. If you can, use some scrapbooking materials that match the packaging of the basket to make your own special card. The more you personalize the edible fruit basket, the more special it will be to the recipient.