Preparation / Directions:
1. Peel and section the grapefruit and oranges. Remove the seeds and membranes. Cut the sections into bite-size pieces and dump into a big non-metallic bowl.
2. Peel and core the pineapple (making sure to get all the eyes), cut the flesh into bite-sized pieces and add to the bowl. A typical whole pineapple is usually too much, so you might want to reserve about 1/3 of the flesh to eat by itself.
3. Peel and cut the melon, bananas, peaches, and kiwi fruits and add to the bowl. The kiwis should be sliced horizontally (so the seeds make pretty circular patterns).
4. Add the stewed prunes, syrup and all. This will moisten everything. Add the maraschino cheries and the syrup they came in (check for stems). Add the nectar, making sure there is enough liquid to cover the fruit.
5. This is the hard part. Put it all in the refrigerator, and don't eat any until tommorow. It really needs to sit overnight for all the colors and flavors to blend together.
Many people think of fruit salad as that disgusting stuff that comes in a can made from diced plastic fruit and heavy syrup. This is more like what it is supposed to taste like, although some people might claim that my addition of syrup makes this into fruit cocktail instead of fruit salad. Whatever you call it, it's especially good in the summer. I make it every couple of months (usually in vast quantities, even though there are only two of us, hence the name). It rarely lasts very long, regardless of how much I make.
Some people might object to the use of maraschino cherries - they are processed with sulfur dioxide, which isn't really good for you. I like the way they taste, so I allow myself this one debauch. Unless you can find good-quality fresh fruit, it is better to use canned. This is especially true of pineapple - canned pineapple is not as good as good fresh pineapple, but is much better than a bad fresh one. For the melon, I've used honeydew, canteloupe, and casaba with good results. Watermelon is interesting, but has a very diferent texture from the others. More important than the actual variety is that it is ripe. Unfortunately, New York supermarkets only seem to sell the kind of melon that goes from rock-hard to rotten without passing through ripe. Bananas are best when they are just starting to get brown speckles. My mother uses orange juice for the liquid, but I prefer nectar. The combination of the prune and cherry syrups give it a nice color. Sometimes I add a bit of lemon juice for tartness. I've experimented with cherry liqueur, but didn't really like the results. Use whatever fruit you find fresh in the market. The invariant part is the grapefruit, orange, and maraschino cherries.
Difficulty : easy.
Precision : approximate measurem