Summer is a time of fun outdoor parties, lounging by the pool, and barbecues with friends. And due to the heat, everyone needs a nice cold beverage. If you’re looking to add festivity to your get-togethers, or simply enjoy a more posh atmosphere when you’re hanging out alone, ice cubes infused with edible flowers or herbs add a colorful touch of class to your drinks.
But like all Pinterest-worthy ideas, a bit of skill is needed to create the perfect decorative ice cubes. Just follow these simple tips.
Use a silicone ice cube tray. Silicone ice cube trays work best for this project, because you can easily pop out the cubes without damaging them. Choose one that makes large, square cubes.
Select your flowers. You might not want to actually eat your flowers as the cubes melt, but sticking with edible ones is best anyway. Nasturtiums, pansies, marigolds, violets, geraniums, and miniature roses work best.
Or, use herbs. Herbs like basil and mint work great in a number of alcoholic or non-alcoholic drinks. Lavender adds an interesting flavor to lemonade or cocktails. Consider your drinks ahead of time, and choose herbs that will complement their flavors.
Use distilled water. Your tap water might contain trace additives or minerals that create more cloudy ice cubes. Use distilled water for the clearest cubes, so you can actually see your herbs or flowers well.
Freeze in layers. The main difficulty with decorative ice cubes is that the flowers or herbs tend to float to the top. If you want your blooms or leaves trapped in the center of the cube, this will become a multi-step project. Fill your ice cube tray about one third of the way full, and then add your herbs or flowers. Freeze until solid, then add another layer of water and freeze. Finally, add the last layer of water and freeze. Your decorations should end up trapped in the center of the cube this way.
Get creative. Try using several different flowers or herbs for a multi-colored look, and experiment with shaping your blooms in the tray for a variety of results.
Store your cubes in a cute ice bucket. If you’re using your decorative cubes for a party, remember ice will melt quickly. Store them in a decorative bucket that is designed to keep ice frozen for hours.