Thanksgiving Fruit Centerpiece
Source: Entertaining Good Things 2005, Volume 2005 Special Issue 2005
Fruit has a long history of being used as an adornment that fills the space in the middle of a tabletop: A first-century fresco in Pompeii depicts a lavish table with a fruit centerpiece, and the French later raised this table decoration to a high art. With a few easy-to-find fruits and nuts, you can transform your own table.
Lay a blanket of a few dried leaves on a glass stand, and arrange a pyramid of clementines on top, making sure not to stack the small citrus so high that they will topple easily. The clementines can be further embellished with dried or fresh wild berries and a few additional leaves.
Set the pyramid in the center of the table, and place bowls of fresh figs, dates, dried cranberries or cherries, grapes, and nuts around it. Vary the bowls' contents to include as wide a spectrum of colors as possible. As the meal concludes, the centerpiece can be slowly dismantled as your family and friends linger and consume the fruit and nuts.