Beautiful and easy presentation. When we were non kid we back lit the glass cake stand with low candles, now that we have our son we use a small standing night light set just part way under the cake stand to illuminate the centerpiece and keep it kid safe. Not knowing how large you'll make your centerpiece you'll have to guesstimate on the quantity of fruit needed. On occasion I also toast the whole walnuts and while still warm thread (needle and dark thread) them to look like pine cones without the jelly and sugar coatings.
- 1 (10 ounce) jar red currant jelly
- 4 cups superfine sugar (also known as bar sugar)
- fresh fruit, not peeled (i.e. apples, mix of different varieties for colour, oranges, lemons, pears, grapes, cherries, limes)
- whole nuts (walnuts, almonds, cashews etc)
- 1⁄2-1 cup powdered sugar
- fresh mint sprig (even parsley, anything non poisonous and green)
- parchment paper
- Line 2 baking sheets with parchment paper.
- Fill one mixing bowl with superfine sugar.
- Keep second one to catch excess sugar.
- Place jelly into microwave safe bowl, heat on high for 2 minutes.
- Stir and microwave another minute or until melted (watch carefully).
- Using the fork, pierce the fruit on the bottom securely.
- Using the pastry brush paint the jelly one at a time onto the fruit (reheat jelly as it cools). Hold the freshly painted fruit over the sugar filled bowl.
- Using the spoon sprinkle the sugar over the fruit until coated.
- Use the empty mixing bowl to shake off excess sugar and not soil the first bowl. Place sugared fruit on parchment to dry about 45 minutes.
- Lightly coat nuts with remaining jelly and roll in the second sugar shake off bowl adding more sugar if needed, remove with fork and dry with the fruit. Arrange fruit and nuts on cake stand or platter, building as high and creative as you wish. Place mint, parsley or your choice of greenery in and around the centerpiece. Lightly dust the tops of the fruit and some of the greenery (mint etc) with powdered sugar as if newly fallen snow.