Saturday, 7 December 2013

Easy freezy - Xmas ice

A couple of years ago, my daughter did some shifts at a local cocktail establishment, The Kenilworth.

It’s quite a place – 17th-century cottages knocked through into several bars, now done out in a jazz theme – with literally hundreds of cocktails on offer. They make their own fruit syrups, maraschino cherries and so forth.

A particular feature was the giant ice ball maker. Fantastically expensive, this gadget produces satsuma-sized ice spheres for spirits. The industrial-strength kit costs hundreds of pounds. I just wanted a stocking filler for my husband to go in his favourite tipple, Southern Comfort.

I scoured the web, and found some great silicon moulds on ebay and Amazon that start at around £2.50. They’re a simple two-part mould that you fill, stop up and pop in the freezer.

But then, as ever, I got distracted. You should see variety of ice trays out there - just using Amazon and ebay, with search term ice tray and then whatever  you like.

Starting big, what about the Death Star ice-ball maker? Prices from around a tenner. That’s not all. You can create frozen Storm Troopers, Boba Fetts, X-wing fighters, R2D2s, a Millennium Falcon, Darth Vader and even Han Solo in carbonite. What are these people on?

I rather like the Doctor Who tray, with Tardis and Dalek shapes. Great for kids of all ages. On a similar note, there’s space invaders, Lego bricks and pirate skulls. I want them all. 

What a great marketing idea, any authors out there. Ice trays on your book's theme. I could a ship (Ice Trekker), or a set of six for Legends of Liria (Cloud Pearl, Golden Bell, Desert Star, Salamander Ring, Lantern and Falcon). Or even an orchid-shaped one for The Lost Orchid! Somebody stop me.

Moving on. Maritime themes are prevalent – shapes including fish, sharks and a rather jolly quartet of octopuses. Or is that octopice? 

More elegant are the selection of diamond shapes, from mixed sets to stonking great faceted blocks (from around £3 and up). Sports are also catered for, the most common being golf balls. Personally, I think these are dull. But that’s just me.

However, the ultimate in bad taste and ingenuity gets my vote. For those with a dark sense of humour, it’s a Titanic-making ice set, complete with icebergs.

I found one on Amazon for £1.99 including postage. Click. Bargain.

By Pamela Kelt

PS If you're in a festive mood, search for snowflakes, Christmas trees and Santas. However, someone's missed a marketing opportunity. Could I find one with a decent moose to purchase in the UK? Not a one.