In Texas it’s hard to keep a jack o’ lantern looking fresh for very long. About an hour after carving, the flies arrive and the heat starts to melt the pumpkin into a slump. Within a couple of days it’s caving in on itself in a sort of gelatinous lump. Which is really scary, true. But gross.
And it dawned on me – the pumpkin isn’t exactly a southern crop.
In the name of keeping it local, and celebrating the harvests of our region, AND keeping the flies away, I came up with this little creation; the Texas Ruby Red Grapefruit Jack O’Lantern. It is quick and easy and really quite beautiful. And lasts on our counter a whole lot longer than a pumpkin ever would!
Lo and behold our Ruby-Red-fresh-from-the-Rio-Grande-Valley-grapefruit-jack-o-lanterns.
Cut off the top of the grapefruit, in a similar manner to cutting off the top of a pumpkin.
Run a sharp paring knife along the inside of the grapefruit between the fruit and the rind. Go along the sides and the bottom too.
With a spoon, scoop out the insides as best you can. Put it in a bowl for your eating pleasure.
Put a small votive in and light or do steps 5-7 to make a small oil lamp
Using the tab from a soda can, tie a piece of wick around the middle of the tab leaving about a half inch of wick sticking up from the top.
Place the tab, wick up, in the bottom center of the grapefruit.
Pour in about an inch or so of vegetable oil or any other kind of cooking oil you might have handy.
Light and enjoy the show!
You can find more projects at Future Craft Collective!
And read more about slowing things down at home at Slow Family Living.
About Bernadette Noll
I am a mother of four, partner of one, author, crafter, lover of thrift stores and outdoors and co-founder of Slow Family Living and Future Craft Collective. My book Make Stuff Together was published in Spring 2011 by Wiley Publishing. My next book: Slow Family Living; 75 ways to slow down, connect and create more joy will be out in March, 2013 from Perigee Publishing. Read more at Slowfamilyliving.com