Ice molds for punch bowls are both eye-catching and practical. And easy to make, too, with things you have around the house.
Add whole strawberries, cranberries, mint leaves, citrus slices with cherries on top, etc., to an ordinary mold and it becomes decorative and very classy, indeed.
First, find a mold.
You can buy a variety of ice molds in many shapes... hearts,
squares, numbers, shells, stars, even dentures. (Can't wait to try that
one.) But if you don't have one, improvise. Small bowls and plastic
storage containers make excellent molds.
A large muffin tin is perfect for corralling citrus slices; float
3 to 5 of these medium-size molds instead of one large one, and have
spares, too. Or turn your small metal canister lid over and see what
interesting possibilities arise.
For ice ring molds, bundt pans, Jell-o molds or ring-shaped cake pans are perfect. Just fill and freeze.
And don't forget ice cube trays. Freezing whole, small strawberries, for instance, in the compartments makes very attractive ice cubes, especially if you leave the hulls on.
Searching your kitchen for ice mold ideas is as fun as making
them. Just make sure to use something that will not break when the
liquid in them freezes and expands.
Choose a liquid.
If you are freezing water use only distilled water, for the
sake of clarity. But using fruit juice, tea or a carbonated soft drink
in your ice mold will add flavor as it melts, not dilute the punch. You
can even pre-make some of the punch, minus any alcohol, and use that.
Alcohol does not freeze well.
Add goodies to make more decorative ice molds for punch.
A plain (but practical) ice mold can be turned into a work of art by adding fruit, leaves and/or edible flowers. Here's how:
Pour 1/2 to 1 inch of liquid into the bottom of your mold. Arrange your chosen goodies in the liquid, cover with plastic wrap, and freeze. Remember that the mold will be inverted so if you want cherries on top, for instance, place them on the bottom.
Remove the mold from the freezer, add more liquid to cover well, and freeze again. Allow several hours for the process.
When ready, run warm water over the bottom of the mold to unseat your creation. Invert and float the mold in the punch bowl.
See how an ice ring mold is made: