For fun and a treat, how about some fancy ice cubes. They are pretty and a taste surprise when the ice melts in a beverage. You can use a raspberry, a portion of a peeled orange, lemon or lime wedge, a maraschino cherry, candied fruit, mint leaves and much more. The sky is the limit :-)
Fill an ice tray 1/3 full with water and then partially freeze. Add the fruit to the center of each cubicle, press slightly and freeze a bit longer (this way your choice will remain centered in the cube). Finish by filling the rest of the ice cubicles with water. Freeze completely and forget until time to use.
If you don't want to be this fancy but still want fun cubes, simply put a drop or two of food coloring in each ice cubicle and add water before freezing.
Oh, and if you just want a fun flavor, you can put a drop or two of your favorite food flavoring in each ice cubicle.
By Deeli from Richland, WA
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After a while the ice stops coming out in a perfect form, whether it be the plastic or the metal trays and you get cracked ice. To solve this problem, spray the ice trays with vegetable oil, then wash it, fill it with water, and you have whole ice cubes again.
If you are like me and still have to freeze your own ice cubes, a cookie sheet under the ice cube trays used to carry them to the freezer saves a lot of messes. I leave mine right in the freezer.
I drink a lot of plain water but instead of adding ice, I freeze cubed watermelon or other fruits. Add to drinks for a festive, flavorful and colorful drink. Great way to help kids drink healthier too!
With summer coming on, and ice an important item, I have found a way to make filling icecube trays a neater job. I have always overfilled, dripped, and spilled when attempting this, but discovered that a Baby's Bulb Syringe is perfect for the job.
Add salt to the water before freezing to make your ice last longer.
Boiled water freezes clear to make nicer ice cubes or ice moulds for punch.
I make ice chips in an ice cube tray by twisting the ice cubes before they are totally frozen. After they get frozen, I twist the tray again and pull out the little pieces.
I have a tip for ice cubes. I twist the plastic ice cube trays to loosen the cubes, then quickly slap the tray upside down on one of those thin flexible plastic cutting boards to dislodge them.
Different colored ice cubes made of KoolAid make an exciting looking, as well as an unusually flavored drink when added to lemonade. Remember to use good judgment.
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Flavored ice cubes are great in water or lemonade on a warm summer day. Here are some ideas for making your own flavored ice cubes. Post your ideas.
I love to freeze mint in ice cubes. Just take a washed leaf and put it in the each compartment of the tray. Add to iced tea or lemonade.
When you have a tree full of oranges or lemons, juice them and place them in ice cube trays. When the are frozen the cubes can be stored in plastic bags for future use.
I love to make Kool-aid lemonade and freeze as icecubes for my ice tea. You get sweetener and lemon flavor all at once without diluting!. Don't forget you can freeze in small bowls and put in a large cooler type thermos. Debby
Put fruit punch or something in the tray and add different kinds of berries such as raspberries or blue berries.
What can I use to get the ice cubes to release easily from the trays?
By Barb K
One thing I read a long time ago, is that you should never, ever run warm or hot water in the trays - that sets them up to stick and ultimately ruins the trays.
I used to get hard water build up when we lived where there was well water. After a few months the cubes would stick. I would fill the tray with a 1/2 and 1/2 mixture of water and vinegar. I would let it set over night and wash it with soap and water. Plastic ice cube trays don't last forever. Freezing ice over and over will cause very small cracks in the plastic over time. The water will get into the cracks and hold the ice in the tray. You can get trays at a dollar store and just replace them from time to time. I got 3 for 2 bucks at Dollar General last time.
When larger than normal ice cubes are in order, using muffin tins can make the size you need. They will last longer in a pitcher, beverage cooler or punch bowl.
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Both the water dispenser and ice maker broke on our 11 year old fridge. We are waiting for the rest of the fridge to go kaput before we replace it. Repair will be about $300.
When making lots of ice cubes for those summer gatherings, store them in brown paper bags in your freezer. They will not become clumped together. It works.
My mother used to make iced tea in the summer as many people do, but she would freeze lemonade in freezer ice cube trays and in each compartment she would alternate red and green maraschino cherries.