Up Your Ice Game

Never underestimate the importance of ice at your party! We've got some easy ways for you to up your ice game at your next get-together. 

 

Fruit and herb-infused ice cubes, as seen on Food Network's The Kitchen.

Photo by: David Katz

David Katz

Frozen Drink Stirrers:

What You'll Need:

  • Twice-boiled and cooled water (to ensure your ice freezes clear)
  • Long silicone ice trays/molds (the trays cost about $10 for a pack of 2)
  • Fresh rosemary sprigs
  • Blueberries
  • Pomegranate seeds

How To:

  1. Pour the twice-boiled and cooled water into the molds.
  2. Add sprigs of rosemary to one mold, pressing them down.
  3. Add blueberries and pomegranate seeds to another mold.
  4. Freeze for at least 3 to 4 hours.
  5. Gently remove the ice from the molds and add to drinks as stirrers. As a bonus, when the stirrers begin to melt, they'll infuse the drinks with flavor!

Ice Lanterns:

What You'll Need:

  • Scissors
  • Large OJ (or milk) cartons (we used a 59-ounce size)
  • Small OJ (or milk) cartons (they should fit inside the large cartons--we used a 32-ounce size)
  • 2 metal (or wooden) skewers per ice lantern
  • Fresh mint sprigs (or any fresh herb sprigs)
  • Twice-boiled and cooled water (to ensure your ice freezes clear)
  • Electric candles
  • Metal/porcelain tray

How To:

  1. Cut the large cartons of OJ (or milk) in half.
  2. Cut the small cartons of OJ (or milk) in half (they should fit inside the large cartons).
  3. Place a small OJ carton inside each large carton, leaving a little space at the bottom as a base.
  4. Poke 2 metal skewers through the top of both cartons in each set to suspend in place.
  5. Place the mint sprigs in between the cartons.
  6. Fill with the twice-boiled and cooled water and freeze for at least 4 hours.
  7. To remove: peel off the cartons from the ice and place a small electric candle in each center.
  8. Arrange the lanterns on a chilled metal tray to keep them cold.
  9. Place remaining herb sprigs on the tray for an added decorative touch.

Frozen Wine Cooler:

What You'll Need:

  • Large bucket
  • Small bucket (one that will fit inside the large bucket, leaving at least 3 inches on the sides)
  • Twice-boiled and cooled water (to ensure your ice freezes clear)
  • Weight such as a large rock, brick, food from the freezer, etc.
  • Lemon and lime slices
  • Flowers (various colors)
  • Ice cubes
  • Wine bottles
  • Large bowl (for the cooler to sit in)
  • Crushed ice

How To:

  1. Fill a large bucket with approximately 3 inches of water (it does not have to be twice-boiled and cooled for this stage) and freeze.
  2. Take out of the freezer and place a small bucket inside the large bucket.
  3. Fill the large bucket halfway with the twice-boiled and cooled water.
  4. Add a weight to the small bucket so it stays down (a large rock, brick, food from the freezer, etc.).
  5. Add lemon and lime slices and flower petals to the water, then freeze.
  6. Remove from the freezer and pour more twice-boiled and cooled water to the top, adding more lemon and lime slices and flower petals. (It needs to be frozen in stages so the fruit and flowers stay suspended when frozen; otherwise, they sink!)
  7. To remove: twist the small bucket out of the large bucket. (TIP: Soak the large bucket in warm water for a few minutes to loosen the mold.)
  8. Place ice cubes and wine bottles in the mold. Keep in a large cold bowl surrounded by crushed ice to make it last longer.
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