Melon Baller Cheats
Your melon baller has a secret life, and it has nothing to do with fruit. Its sharp edges, round shape and little hole to prevent suction make this little scoop indispensible for preparing recipes, appetizers, and much more!
De-seed Apples or Pears Halves – Slice them in half vertically, and scoop out the seeds.
Remove Artichoke Choke– This can be done in two ways. The easiest is to slice the artichoke in half, and scoop out the fuzz and thorny baby leaves as close to the heart as possible without removing it. The trickier method is removing the choke while keeping the Artichoke whole. To do this, carefully open the artichoke, patiently spreading the leaves open. Then, insert the scoop in the center and first scoop delicately until you get all the fuzz out.
Make “cups” and “boats” – For cucumbers, zucchini cups: cut the veggies in very thick (2”) slices, then stand up and scoop 2/3 of the interior out (reserve to cook and mix with the stuffing). Slice cherry tomatoes in half and scoop. For baked vegetable zucchini or eggplant boats: cut the vegetable horizontally (the long way) and scoop out the interior leaving a nice thick wall (about ¼”) for the vegetable to hold its shape during cooking.
Dosing– When filling cookies, pasta or pastry or making things that require small amounts of dough the melon baller is the perfect scoop.
Mini-ice cream scoop – For mini-desserts, or small people… you know, kids!
A deeper deviled egg – Double the filling by gently scooping out a little more space than what is left when the yolk is removed.
Make Swiss Cheese – just kidding – but you can scoop balls out of any semi-firm or very cold cream cheese, roll the balls in sesame seeds and herbs and serve them as an appetizer. Yum!
What has your melon baller been doing?
About the Author: Laura Pazzaglia is the cook and photographer behind hip pressure cooking (http://www.hippressurecooking.com/), a blog to inspire others to use their pressure cookers more often by posting unexpected and delicious recipes with easy-to-find ingredients, vivid step-by-step photographs and recipes in both U.S. & metric measurements. She has writes regularly in her personal blog, lapsus humanus (http://lapsushumanus.blogspot.com/) — which nobody reads–since 2003.