You might not have looked very closely at the ice you have in your drinks, but if you did then you’ll notice a difference. When you make ice at home you’ll generally find that it is opaque whereas if you were to look at the ice you are given in restaurants and bars it is generally see through. Of course it doesn’t make a big difference to the taste of your drink, but it can be fun to make clear ice cubes at home.
Thankfully there are a few different ways to make clear ice cubes, all of which are reasonably easy to do.
When you make ice normally, it is the air and mineral impurities that cause the ice to become opaque. By using boiled water you get rid of as much of the air as possible which helps the ice to be made as clear as possible. If you have time then you should boil the water twice, allowing it to cool completely in-between boils. Make sure that while it is cooling it is covered to stop it from collecting dust. When you pour your boiled water into ice trays make sure that you cover in plastic wrap to keep out particles – that way you can be sure that the ice will freeze clear rather than opaque.
With this method you’ll need to get a cooler to use – the type you usually take on a picnic to keep your food cool will work well, just make sure that it fits in your freezer. Place an ice tray at the bottom of the bag and fill with water – you can use distilled water for this but many people claim that tap water works just as well. When you pour your water in to be frozen, pour it into the bottom of the cooler so that the ice tray is surrounded by water. This helps to seal your ice cubes and make sure that they’re kept clear of particles etc. Place your cooler into the freezer with the top open and freeze for at least 24 hours. The best way to do this is to freeze them slowly, so setting your freezer to around 20°F should be fine. When you take the tray out of the bag you’ll find that the top layer is cloudy, but once you chip this off the ice you are left with underneath is perfectly clear ice cubes.