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Combo Plate: Watermelon carving, criminal stupidity, 'MasterChef' and more

July 22, 2010 | 11:30 am

-- I have no idea that watermelon carving was such a .... thing! It seems like everyone is doing it. (Type "watermelon carving" into YouTube and you will see what I mean.) The video above shows watermelon carving in action, as in the nuts and bolts of how you actually do it. Which is what you will want to watch after you click this link and see an amazing photo collection of 13 stunning watermelon carvings.

-- Ten L.A.-area hopefuls are sharpening their knives -- they have no professional cooking experience but they are convinced they have what it takes to go toe-to-toe with Gordon Ramsay and become America's first "MasterChef."

-- Is this guy the most brazen criminal ever? It had seemed like the shuttered Valencia Club in Northern California had a new lease on life. Alcohol was flowing, and customers were crowding the bar. But Placer County detectives say the business was actually being operated by a local transient, who broke into the club, reopened it, and posed as the new owner. Fox40 has the story.

--  Don't just sit there! At least vote while you are sitting there: Weigh in with your favorite farmers market at this site, American Farmland Trust, dedicated to raising awareness about farmland in America. Voting ends next month. At last glance, the Mar Vista farmers market is California's Top 5. What? You don't know where your local farmers market is at? Well, check out our interactive map of Southern California farmers markets.

--  Tomatoes are sometimes considered no-brainers to grow -- fruitful, rambunctious weeds that can thrive on indifference. That may be true for bush tomatoes, the varieties that politely grow to a certain size and then set out their fruit at about the same time. But other varieties need pruning: Here's your guide to pruning like a pro.

-- How about breakfast in bed at Sequoia National Park? Our Travel section has the deal info.

Have some news for the Daily Dish? E-mail me at rene.lynch@latimes.com.

-- Rene Lynch
Twitter / renelynch