Summer festivities call for FLOWERS! (Well, in my book anyway!) Here's a simple way to add a whole lot of botanical beauty to your party and really impress your guests.
I made this floral ice punch bowl for my birthday and it was a hit! I'm planning on making it again and I learned some lessons to adjust for the second time around, which I'll share below.
Floral Ice Punch Bowl
- flowers - I recommend edible ones since they will become exposed as the ice melts. You can find edible flower petals at your local grocery store in the fresh herbs section or you can forage for your own using this handy guide.
- two large bowls - One should be able to nest inside the other. Lesson Learned: Use a silicone or other flexible bowl for the outer bowl as this ceramic one I used was really hard to get the finished ice bowl out of.
- measuring cup with spout
- weights - I used pie weights, but you can use anything including ice packs or other heavy things in your freezer.
- tray or dish to rest your final ice bowl in
1. Collect the flowers you want to use for the ice bowl and lay them out in the larger bowl. I wanted to make an impression, so I picked these fuchsia roses and left the stems on, which definitely helped keep them in place. You can use any flowers, just keep in mind that small flowers will probably float to the top. If you want to use small flowers, you might try freezing the bowl in stages to create layers of flowers.
Lesson learned: The roses I picked were a little too big for this project. The large flower heads were so thick that they created gaps in the ice bowl, which meant that the punch would leak out. Luckily, the flower heads were clustered at the top so we only filled the bowl halfway with punch at first and then refilled as needed.
2. Once you arrange your flowers in the larger bowl, carefully rest the smaller bowl inside and gently push all the flowers down so they're flush with the top of the bowl rim.
3. Slowly pour water into the outer bowl so it fills in around the flowers. Jostle the inner bowl around so the water makes its way around. Fill with water until you can see it reach a couple inches below the rim of the outer bowl. You will be adjusting the water level in the next step, so this is just an estimate for now.
4. Add your weights to the inner bowl. You can use pie weights, beans, ice packs, or anything from your freezer. This part is a little tricky. Basically, you want to add enough weight so that the inner bowl rests at a height from the outer bowl to create a fairly even ice wall on all sides. The inner bowl should not touch the bottom of the outer bowl, otherwise, the base of the bowl will be too thin to hold your punch. Once you have the inner bowl weighed down, add more water, if necessary, to fill the outer bowl to the brim.
5. Clear a space in your freezer and carefully place the bowls so that they rest flat. Leave to freeze overnight.
6. Wait until just before you're going to serve your punch to take the ice bowl out of the freezer. When you're ready, remove it from the freezer and carefully pull the inner bowl out--it should come out with fairly easily. Now, hopefully your outer bowl has some flexibility and you can flex it until the entire ice bowl slides out. If not, I had luck getting my ice bowl out of a ceramic bowl by flipping it over in my sink and running cold water over the bottom of the bowl until it eventually fell out. Don't run water over the ice itself.
7. Place your floral ice bowl on a tray or dish to collect the water as it melts. Inspect the walls of the bowl to make sure it will hold liquid and then add your favorite punch!