How to Carve Vegetables

Overview

Carving vegetables is a form of food preparation popular in Thai and other Asian cuisines. The theory behind carving vegetables and fruits is that food should look as good as it tastes. Shaping vegetables with a paring knife makes them attractive, bite-sized and altogether more appetizing. Experts at carving vegetables can shape them to look like flowers, leaves, vines and exotic birds and animals.

Step 1

Purchase vegetable-shaping tools during Halloween, when commercial manufacturers make vegetable shaping tools for the purpose of carving jack-o'-lanterns. You can also purchase carving tools from an Asian food preparation and supply store such as templeofthai.com or fruitcarving.com.

Step 2

Select vegetables that are just barely under-ripe, which makes them firm enough for carving.

Step 3

Wash the vegetables if they are going to be eaten; also wash your hands, tools and cutting board.

Step 4

Plan your carving before you cut into your vegetable. Always work from a pattern the first time you shape a vegetable. Practice on several vegetables to perfect your technique before you make a presentation vegetable.

Step 5

Carve your vegetable using gentle strokes to avoid bruising the vegetable. You should carve your subject as quickly as possible to keep the carving fresh. Never care more of the vegetable than you have to; doing so removes nutrients as you remove the flesh of your vegetable.

Step 6

Cover the face of the carving with lemon juice. The vitamin C in lemon juice helps keep the exposed flesh of the carving fresh and prevents spoilage for longer periods of time.

Things You'll Need

  • Vegetable saws
  • Vegetable drills
  • Needles
  • Tacks
  • Assorted vegetables

References

  • Thai Carving: How To Carve Fruits and Vegetables
  • Chiff:Fruit and Vegetable Carving
  • OneIndia:How To Carve Fruits And Vegetables ?

Who Can Help

  • Temple of Thai: Fruit Carving
  • Kae-SA-Luk: The Art of Thai Fruit and Vegetable Carving by Pam Maneeratana
Keywords: presenting vegetables, carving vegetables, Thai carving

About this Author

Tracy S. Morris has been a freelance writer since 2000. She has published two novels and numerous online articles. Her work has appeared in national magazines and newspapers, including "Ferrets," "CatFancy," "Lexington Herald Leader" and "The Tulsa World."