I was at a brunch wedding shower last weekend and all the food was inspired by Pinterest. They had doughnut hole and fruit kabobs, bacon-threaded skewers, and they turned waffles into finger food by putting them into individual cups with syrup at the bottom for dipping. It reminded me how Pinterest has exploded the playing field when it comes to creative ideas.
Maybe you’ve seen these flower ice cubes floating around on the site. They’ve been intriguing me for a while, and I finally gave them a try. They look so pretty and they seem like a perfect idea for spring, but they weren’t quite as straightforward as they look. The first few times I made them they didn’t turn out that great but I kept at it and finally got the hang of it. I’ll try to spare you some aggravation and share what I learned.
The only thing you need for this project, besides water and flowers, is a silicone ice cube tray. The silicone is flexible and makes it really easy to pop the cubes out when you want to use them. The soft surface doesn’t scratch the cubes, and it makes it possible to get a really sharp shape to the ice. I like this one because it makes relatively large square cubes which look pretty and fit good sized blossoms. The large size melts more slowly, too, which is a plus. You’ll use this tray over and over for all kinds of creative ice cubes, so it’s a great little investment to make early on in the season.
Even though you’re not going to be actually eating the flowers, edible varieties like roses, pansies, nasturtiums, marigolds, violets and geraniums will obviously be the best choices for these ice cubes. I found that pansies and geraniums worked well, and I didn’t try miniature roses, but they would be a good choice. You can also use herbs and blooming herbs like mint, or chive blossoms.
One of the issues that came up is that regular water tends to make cloudy ice cubes. so I tried distilled water. If you boil the distilled water and then let it cool, it will make clear ice so you can actually see your beautiful blossoms. In the end I found that the distilled water did make clearer ice, but that once the ice is exposed to the air, it tended to frost over a bit anyway, and all the ice turned clear once a drink was poured over it.
Larger blossoms worked the best, because they were big enough to be seen through the ice from different angles. The technique involves freezing the ice in layers so you can trap the flower in the center. Add a little bit of water to cover the bottom of each cube and set a flower or petals, into each cube. Freeze until solid, and then pull the tray out and fill with more water and freeze again until solid. Top off the cube with water and freeze one last time. Then you’re ready to show off your fancy cubes!
What You Will Need
- fresh picked edible blossoms (make sure they are pesticide free)
- distilled water
- Boil the distilled water and let cool completely.
- Make sure your flowers or petals are clean and dry.
- Fill the bottom third of each ice cube square with water. Set a flower into each cube, and I recommend alternating some face down and some facing up, because it's hard to predict how they will shift as they freeze. Freeze until firm.
- Remove the silicone tray from the freezer and pour a little more water on top, about another third of the way up. Gently push the flower down if it floats. Put the tray back in the freezer until firm.
- Remove from the freezer again and top off each square with water.
- Freeze until firm, and then use or store in the freezer.
Method adapted from Martha Stewart
I’d give this idea a tentative thumbs up. They were a little tricky and time consuming to make, and well, ice does melt quickly. If you did want to use them for entertaining you’d have to have a well insulated ice bucket to store them in. But hey, if you’re giving your BFF a wedding shower, or hosting the Easter brunch to end all Easter brunches, go for it — they are pretty!