Prep 20 mins
Cook 2 hrs
The ice cubes are lovely served in summer drinks; the ice mold makes a very elegant addition to a punch bowl. This is from the Joy of Cooking. (Note: "cooking" time is freezing time.)
- FOR DECORATIVE ICE CUBES: put small chunks of fruit or mint sprigs into an ice tray, fill with water and freeze.
- Serve the ice cubes directly in drinks, or put them out in a glass bowl or ice bucket with tongs.
- FOR THE DECORATIVE ICE MOLD: you will need a glass bowl that is smaller than your punch bowl, plus a second shallow container of equal volume.
- Fill the shallow container with water and let it sit at room temperature for 15-30 minutes, stirring it from time to time to get rid of any air bubbles.
- Line the bottom (but not up the sides) of the empty glass bowl with fruit and/or flowers of your choice.
- Take a tablespoon or so of water from the shallow container and pour this water over the fruit/flower layer, then put the glass bowl in the freezer, leaving it there until the fruit/flower layer is anchored in ice.
- Next, pour another tablespoon or so of the reserved water over the first (now frozen), and allow this to freeze; continue adding water and letting it freeze until the fruit/flower layer is just barely covered in ice.
- Now start going up the bowl, laying fruit and/or flowers against the side of the bowl, and pouring water over them a little at a time, allowing the water to freeze to anchor the fruit and/or flowers against the side of the bowl.
- Continue adding water and allowing it to freeze until the bowl is full of ice.
- When you're ready to use the mold, let the bowl sit at room temperature for 15-30 minutes; or alternatively, put it in a slightly larger bowl containing warm water for a couple of minutes.
- When the ice has melted just enough so that it's no longer stuck to the side of the bowl, invert the whole thing inside your punch bowl; the result will be a mound of ice with fruit and flowers all over its surface (Note: when you pour some punch over it, the ice surface will become clear, though it's usually opaque when it first comes out of the mold).
For crystal clear ice cubes, boil the water first, cool it, then freeze with the additions in each cube section of the tray. During the summer I keep a supply of these cubes in the freezer for refreshing cool drinks.
I tried this wth mint sprigs. I had several issues with this. First, I used a mini muffin tin as the mold and the ice cracked and expanded out of the mold. But the funniest thing was that as the ice melted, the mint "bloomed" in the glass. It freaked out the kids. I no konger own an ice cube try because my refrigerator automatibits cally makes ice. I plan to buy a plasic try at the dollar store and try this again with bits of fruit instead. The I will re-rate this recipe.