Temperature records are smashed around the world. Europeans sizzle in scorching heatwave. Let’s make some homemade refreshments!
To drink: A REFRESHING ICE GLASS
Nobody thinks it’s odd if you ask for ice in your drink but if you want your drink in ice… you’ll probably have to do it yourself. Cue our unique ice glass made using flowers and plants. Obviously this pretty drinking vessel won’t last all evening so you’ll have to drink up!
YOU WILL NEED
- Corn, sugar or salt
- Wooden skewer
- Edible (so not poisonous!) flowers. We’ve used purple violas and stock.
- Soda water
- Two tins or flexible plastic moulds, one slightly larger than the other (you need a gap of at least 1.5 cm between the two moulds in order to make the glass). If you opt for tins, use a tin that’s been open with a tin opener, since a tin opener makes a nice opening that the ice can easily get past. Don’t use glass moulds, because water expands when it freezes.
HOW TO MAKE AN ICE GLASS WITH FLOWERS AND PLANTS
Step 1: Pour water into the large tin, and place the small tin in it.
Step 2: Weigh the small tin down with corn, salt or sugar (or something else that won’t freeze).
Step 3: Slide the edible flowers and herbs into the water and arrange them with the wooden skewer.
Step 4: Stick tape over the small tin and secure it to the edge of the large tin. This will keep everything tightly in place.
Step 5: Place the ‘glass in progress’ in the freezer for at least 4 hours.
Step 6: Once frozen, hold the outside of the large tin briefly under the cold tap. Make sure you cover all of it. This will release your ice glass. Just waiting till the outer layer has melted is another option, of course.
Step 7: If everything has worked well, you should be able to slide the small tin out of the ice glass easily.
Step 8: Pour gin and soda or tonic into your glass and finish it with ice cubes and lemon.
To eat: SUMMERY LAVENDER ICE CREAM
This summer, throw a dinner party with lavender and white chocolate ice cream as the pièce de résistance or kick back with a whole tub to yourself. Yum!
YOU WILL NEED
- 250 ml full-fat milk
- 250 ml cream
- lavender from 12 edible lavender flowers
- 6 egg yolks
- 100 g sugar
- approx. 200 g white chocolate, broken up
HOW TO MAKE ICE CREAM WITH LAVENDER
Pick 12 edible lavender flowers. Remove the petals from the stem and set aside 1/3 for the garnish.
Warm the cream in a pan and add the milk and petals.
Bring to the boil and then simmer on a low heat for an hour.
Take the eggs and separate the yolks from the whites. Add 100 grams of sugar to the yolks and beat into an airy mixture.
Remove the pan from the heat and pour the yolk and sugar mixture slowly into the lavender milk. Stir thoroughly. Return the pan to a low heat and gently heat the mixture whilst stirring continuously. Don’t let it boil!
Keep heating the mixture gently until it’s so thick that it adheres to the curved side of a spoon. Pour it through a sieve into a freezer-proof container. Any lumps and lavender petals will be removed.
Mix air into your mixture with the blender on its highest setting for one minute, and then place it in the freezer. After 30 minutes remove it from the freezer, blend it for a minute and then replace in the freezer. Repeat this every 30 minutes until it starts to become ice-cold and thick. Then reduce the waiting time to 15-20 minutes. You will probably have to blend it 6 or 7 times before your ice cream is ready, depending on how cold your freezer is. It’s a whole lot easier if you have an ice cream maker!
Garnish your sorbet with chunks of white chocolate and sprinkle with summery lavender flowers. Bon appétit!
*One more thing: never tuck in to just any (cut) flower or plant; only use edible flowers from specialist suppliers that have been grown for human consumption.