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A Fruit for All Seasons

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Dieticians claim that most of us could do with eating more fruit. But there are other things you can do with fruit besides eating it. This Entry presents a few ways of using fruit, whatever the season.

Spring Fruit

Pre-sliced Bananas

Spring is a good time for trying new things and surprising people. Imagine how surprised your friends will be when they peel a banana and find it already sliced neatly into pieces. All you need is a pin.

  • Stick the pin into the banana. If possible, stick it in where there is already a mark or black dot of some sort on the banana, so that the pinhole will be invisible.

  • Turn the pin from side to side, being careful not to enlarge the hole at all.

  • Remove the pin and repeat at intervals along the banana.

Summer Fruit

Juggling Oranges

The techniques for learning to juggle with three oranges are described in the Entry on Juggling. The easiest method to learn is the three orange cascade. The important thing to note is that the oranges do not travel in a circle, but backwards and forwards along an arc between your hands.

Another useful technique is the bicep toss. Hold an orange in your hand, palm upwards. Roll the orange up your forearm. When the orange reaches your elbow, pull your elbow back suddenly. The orange will kick off your bicep and be launched into the air. With practice, you can catch it in your hand.

Summer Pudding

This recipe is a way of using up lots of summer berries. You will need:

  • About 1.5lb (0.75kg) of raspberries, strawberries, blackcurrants and redcurrants
  • Thickly sliced white bread with the crusts removed
  • 4oz (100g) of caster sugar
  • A 1.5 pint (1 litre) pudding bowl


Put the fruit and sugar in a saucepan and cook it for a few minutes until it gets soft and juicy. Line the pudding bowl with bread. Pour the fruit into the bowl and put more bread on top. Put a plate or saucer on top, then weigh it down with a heavy weight. Chill the whole caboodle overnight.

When serving, turn it over onto a large plate, and serve it with cream or natural yoghurt.

More detailed instructions can be found in the separate Entry on Summer Pudding.

Autumn Fruit

Bisecting Apples

There are two interesting ways to bisect an apple:

The Strongman Approach

  • Grip the apple in both hands, one on each side, with the stalk at the top.

  • Rapidly twist your hands in opposite directions, neatly tearing the apple in half.

The Geometrical Marvel

  • With a sharp knife, cut into the top of the apple, through the point where the stalk goes in, and only down as far as half way.

  • Turn the apple over and repeat, cutting into the base and again only going half way. This cut must be at 90 degrees to the previous one to prevent the apple falling in half.

  • Perform two small cuts around the 'equator' of the apple to join the first two major cuts together.

The apple should now separate into two bizarrely shaped pieces.

Winter Fruit

Warm Pears in Red Wine

This is one of the most delicious recipes for dessert at a winter dinner party.


  • Six hard pears
  • Half pint of red wine (500 ml; 2 cups)
  • An equal quantity of water
  • 5oz sugar (150g; two thirds of a cup)
  • Thin strips of orange peel
  • Juice of 1 orange
  • Cloves and cinnamon to taste
  • Saucepan with lid


Cut the base off the pears so that they can stand upright. Peel them but leave the stalks attached. If the pears are conference pears, you don't have to core them, but for other pears, you should carefully remove the core through the base without damaging the pear. Put all the ingredients except the pears in the saucepan and heat. When the wine is boiling gently, add the pears on their sides, spoon the sauce over them, cover and simmer gently for 30 minutes, turning the pears over after 15 minutes so that both sides get done.

Set the pears aside, turn up the heat and thicken the sauce until nice and gooey.

Serve the pears standing up on a plate. Spoon some of the gooey sauce over them and perhaps add a little cream.


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