Create a Spring Centerpiece and Edible Dip Bowl
It's a snap to enhance an outdoor dining experience by topping your patio table with special touches. The edible dip container, silverware centerpiece and pretty platter featured here are easy to assemble and inexpensive, too.
Silverware Bouquet Is Pretty, Practical
You won't need a whole garden of fresh flowers—just a few blooms—to create this simple centerpiece that's perfect for an outdoor dinner.
To assemble it, gather a cloth napkin, a place setting of silverware and a flower for each diner.
We picked bright green napkins to complement the table setting and help create the look of leaves and stems for our bouquet. When choosing flowers, you'll find tall single-stem flowers work best. We used tulips, but gerbera daisies or roses would look lovely as well.
To begin, arrange a napkin on a diagonal, then place a fork, knife and spoon in the middle. Fold the bottom tip of the napkin over the silverware handles. Starting at one side, begin folding or rolling the edge of the napkin toward the center.
Once the silverware is rolled into the napkin, place a flower on top and continue rolling. (Be sure to pat dry the flower stem with a paper towel, so it doesn't dampen the napkin.)
Repeat with remaining napkins, silverware and flowers. Arrange napkin bundles in a flowerpot or vase to create a centerpiece…or place one on each diner's plate.
You'll want to create this bouquet right before dinner so the flowers don't wilt. Or buy water tubes from a florist. The plastic vials have a hole in the top, so you can fill them with water, insert a flower stem and keep your blooms fresh longer.
Bread Loaf Makes Cute Dip Container
Guests will think you fussed when you serve dip in a container that's both attractive and edible, like the Bread Bowl Appetizer (pictured at top right).
Hollowing out a round loaf of bread to create the bowl is easy to do. First, cut off the top fourth of the loaf. Use a knife to cut around the perimeter of the bread, about 1/2 inch from the crust.
Insert your fingers along the cut and loosen the bread from the bottom of loaf. Remove the bread. (Cut it into cubes to serve with the dip or save for another use, such as making croutons.) Then fill the hollow loaf with a savory dip (see Bread Bowl Appetizer) or most any spread for vegetables or crackers.