An Ice bucket made of ice! Stunning looking for a buffet table or party. Serving Vodka in an ice bucket is a very traditional way to keep it cold so you can serve it in shot glasses for toasts. This also looks stunning for chilling champagne.
Chilling Vodka takes the harshness out of the alcohol and an ice bucket is a very elegant way to present it.
While some instructions to make an ice bucket stress the need to have crystal clear water which can take time to distill and boil it, I have a faster method that gives a different effect.
Depending on if you are doing this outside or in your freezer you should start making your ice bucket about 2 days (or more) before you need it. If making it outside then make sure that the weather will be well below freezing for two days. Most days do have some temperature fluctuations so it might take longer than if you do it in the freezer.
I use ice cubes to make this ice bucket quickly. If you have an ice maker in your refrigerator then you will already have the materials on hand. If you don't have an ice maker then you will need to make or buy enough ice to fill your container about 10 inches.
Have a plastic container that is at least 6 inches wider than the diameter of the bottle you will be displaying.
Having something that is slightly tapered will make it easier to remove the ice bucket. It should be smooth inside or else you will never get the ice bucket out.
I used a decorative trash container that had been cleaned out with bleach (it was an office trash can that only paper had ever been discarded in). Look around your home to see if you have any large plastic containers that you could use.
You will need a smaller container that is larger than the diameter of your bottle by two inches or so. You will be placing this inside the large container.
In your clean large container pour in 2 inches of ice cubes on the bottom.
Place your smaller container on top of these ice cubes making sure it is in the middle of the larger container.
Fill the small container with water so it has some weight to it and won't shift.
Add enough water to the ice cubes so it comes just above them.
Add ice to the depth that you want the ice bucket to be, for a 10 inch high ice bucket you would add 8 more inches of ice since you have a 2 inch base of ice.
Add water to this ice so it just covers the ice cubes. If you add to much water the ice cubes will begin to float.
Carefully place this in the freezer or if it is well below freezing outside, place it outside.
When you are sure that it is frozen solid (24 hours will do it) then place the plastic container under warm running water until the ice bucket dislodges.
To get the small container out of the center add hot water to it and gently twist it until it comes out.
Place your ice bucket made of ice on a plate that has high sides or in a low bowl. It will begin to melt so you might have to drain the plate or bowl periodically.
If you don't want to move it from where you are displaying it then have a dry sponge and bowl on hand in your prep area.
Mop up the water in the sponge and squeeze it out in an extra bowl and place away.
The finished ice bucket made of ice has a charmingly rough look to which suits both vodka and champagne.
This is such a inexpensive presentation that really looks great, perfect at any party or celebration.
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