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[Photograph: Carrie Vasios]

Here's the truth: everybody loves fruit salad. I think it's partially because fruit is objectively awesome (nature's candy!) and partially because people love-hate you when you tempt them with cookies and cakes, and love-love you when you give them an out with some fruit.

Take notice next time: even bad fruit salad gets demolished at meetings. This has the unwanted effect of perpetuating the cycle of throwing some too cold, unripe melon into a bowl with some grapes and pretending it's OK. Don't do it. Get the best of what's in season and give the people an interesting mix. And hey, if it's the Fourth of July, why not make it into a cool shape too.

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This flag can be made with any mix of red, white(ish), and blue fruit. I chose a mix of strawberries, raspberries, and cherries for my red stripes, bananas for the white stripes, and blueberries for the background to the stars. Those "stars" are actually pieces of apple which I cut out using the potato-eye remover doodad on a vegetable peeler.

Ice cream or freshly whipped cream would be a great accompaniment, especially if you want to serve this flag as a dessert. Another nice touch? A little bowl of freshly chopped mint on the side.

But you don't even need it. People love fruit salad. Make this and see.

Get the Recipe

American Flag Fruit Salad »

About the author: Carrie Vasios is the editor of Serious Eats: Sweets. She likes to peruse her large collection of cookbooks while eating jam from the jar. You can follow her on Twitter @carrievasios

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