Pretty simple really, depending on how many you want to make, and this is a "do ahead project", since the apples take awhile to dehydrate.
1) Buy a tote of apples or at least 6, (any kind really), peel them, and then just carve a face using a paring knife, or even pumpkin carving tools!
***For small children- 6 and under, I would advise parents to do this part.
2) Once the skull is carved, place in a bowl of lemon water until ready to bake! When all of your skulls are carved, you will need to bake these on a foil, or silpat lined sheet tray at 200F for about 4 hours, until the apples have "shrunken". We want our apple skulls to last awhile, so the moisture needs to be removed completely! Now, to finish the drying process, simply leave the apples out over night to continue drying.
3) Now, you can either leave your apples "as is", or you can choose to decorate them with edible or non- edible items. It's up to you!
First of all, we relate pomanders mainly with Christmas, but "Pomander" is French for "apple of amber", and is a ball made of perfumes. Pomanders were first mentioned in mid-thirteenth century literature, and were used widely in the late Middle Ages through the 17th century. Although they were not originally made of "edible" materials initially, over the centuries, many forms of these "perfume balls" have been created for different purposes. Interestingly enough, the orange and clove tradition became traditional around the 18th century as "good luck", and was a popular gift during the Christmas and New Year's holiday. Today, pomanders are used for scenting homes and clothing. (And of course, for decoration!)
Pomanders are really very simple to make as well!
All you need is: oranges, whole cloves, cinnamon stick, and **optional- ribbon.
1) You can either leave your orange "as is", or you can take a tool and carve the lines around the orange to mimic a pumpkin.
2) Next, using a toothpick, poke and/or "draw" your face onto the orange. Then, begin taking the whole cloves and poking them into the orange- outlining the shapes on the face first. Then, go back and fill in- placing the cloves tightly together.
3) When your jack-o-lantern face is complete, take a piece of cinnamon stick, and push into the top of the orange. You can tie a thin piece of decorative ribbon around the "stem" if you'd like!
Place your pomander "pumpkins" anywhere you'd like! They make a wonderful scented centerpiece, and would look really cute mixed in with some gourds, acorns, pine cones, etc.