1 8-ounce cream cheese, softened
2 teaspoons sugar
1 / 2 of a 6 ounce contained of frozen orange juice
1 1/ 2 teaspoons orange rind from one orange
1 / 2 cup of marshmallow cream

1. Softened cream cheese in a medium bowl. With a mixer, whip cream cheese and add sugar, continue to whip together. Add marshmallow cream and frozen orange juice, mix on a low speed.
2. Peel and wash orange, and then use a rind peeler or a knife and scrape the rind off the orange into the cream cheese bowl. Save a little bit of orange rind to decorate or use colored sugar or sprinkles.
3. Chill covered until serving. Serve with fresh, clean, sliced fruit.
4. ENJOY! – Dip in and enjoy!

I don’t like fruit. There, I said it! But it’s okay; I do eat all my vegetables. This is not a crime, however, but people think I am a freak. People think I am so strange because I don’t eat fruit. Even my own brother would introduce me to people by saying, “This is my sister, Mariann, and she doesn’t eat fruit.” Who cares? Well, my mother and father did. My mother said I didn’t even eat baby food jars of fruit. They tried to force me to try all kinds of fruit, and I fought back furiously. After one episode of a forced fruit session, I got sick all over the living room carpet. They finally gave up. The doctor said I would be fine as long as I ate my veggies. Well, let’s fast forward to now. I make great apple and peach pies, lemon mousse, strawberries in raspberry sauce, and so on. I have others perform the taste test for me because I never liked the taste of fruit, as explained above. And maybe it has just been too long without my tasting any fruits to try now!

Anyway, I do like this one fruit dip, and I like to dip cookies in it instead of dipping fruit. This dip tastes like a creamsicle pop from the ice cream trucks that drove around when I was a kid. For those of you who do not know what a creamsicle is, let me explain. It is vanilla ice cream covered in orange sherbet. It is icy on the outside and creamy on the inside; therefore, the name creamsicle. On a hot summer day, this is one of the most refreshing treats to have.

Fruit can be a very creative dessert. The colors, shapes and textures are so interesting and different. Whenever a guest who does not enjoy cooking wants to bring over a dessert, I always suggest a fruit platter. They are happy they’re not cooking, and I am happy that I have one less thing to do!

A few years back, my sister-in-law was having a Communion party for her daughter in a restaurant. I offered to help, thinking that since the party was being held in a restaurant, I would have little to do. Well, she asked if I could make a fruit basket using a watermelon. I had seen this before but never made one. I said “Sure, how hard could this be?” given that it is just cut-up fruit. Never again! This turned out to be so expensive and so much work. I was smart enough to recruit two of my friends to help me. To make this watermelon fruit basket, start with a whole watermelon and carve the top half into a basket with a handle. Then scoop with a melon baller utensil to make all the pieces of watermelon into small shaped balls. I also used cantaloupe and honeydew melons in addition to the watermelon and shaped them into small balls. To fill up this tremendous watermelon basket takes a lot of fruit balls. My dining room consisted of three women cutting melons and shaping fruit balls. The table was a sticky, fruity mess. I never thought we would finish. Even with the three of us working together, it took about two hours to complete this task. I brought my watermelon basket to the restaurant and my sister-in-law really appreciated it. I nicely informed her to enjoy it because this was my first and last watermelon basket.

Trust me in serving fruit; a fruit platter served with fruit dip is just as appealing as a watermelon fruit basket and also just as delicious.

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