It's so very nearly summer, and with warmer days comes outdoor dining and drinking! Whether your cocktail are full fat or tee total, these pretty floral, herb and citrus studded ice cubes will pretty up even the simplest of summer libation.
It's best to choose your ingredients for both their flavour, aroma and colour. I like to choose a range of bright, vibrant colours to serve as I drink a lot of simple sparkling water, the colours looks beautiful stacked amidst a fuzz of little soda bubbles.
There are plenty of fruits, vegetables, flowers and herbs you can use in your cubes, but here are some good ones to start experimenting with:
Pretty much anything! Though I'd steer clear of anything a bit mushy, like banana. Some of my favourites are:
Citrus- lemon, lime, orange. Mix up your use of the flesh and the zest for even more variation
Berries- blueberry, strawberry, blackberry, raspberry...
Exotic- kiwi, mango, pineapple...
Cucumber- these are particularly good with a gin and tonic!
Celery- to chill your summer Bloody Mary
Olives- add a little splash of brine to the cubes to add a savoury tang your vodka rocks
It's important to only use edible, food grade flowers. This means that they are both a species that is safe to eat AND has been grown without being sprayed with chemicals and pesticides. If in doubt always double check with an expert as to whether a flower is safe to eat.
-Fruit Blossoms: apple, elderflower (FAVOURITE!), citrus...
-Lemon Thyme or Verbena
I like to use a rigid ice cube tray rather than a silicon one. I find it so much easier to get the cubes out of a rigid tray by turning it upside down against a flat surface and flexing it a little to release the cubes. It might just be me being useless but I'm forever pinging ice cubes out of silicon moulds and across the room.
That being said, the larger flexible molds to make spheres or giant cubes are kind of work the faff because the final cubes look so dam cool... cool, get it?