Double Boil Distilled Water for Clear Ice

Article excerpt

QUESTION: I am having a dinner party next week and would like to serve cocktails. Can you tell me how to make perfectly clear ice cubes instead of white or foggy cubes? Charissa (Portage la Prairie, Man.)

ANSWER: The trick is to boil distilled water twice. In other words, pour distilled water into a pot and boil it. Let it cool and repeat. Freeze cubes in trays. Or if your party has a theme, freeze water in silicone moulds or a new rubber glove. Secure the opening of the glove with a rubber band and freeze. Remove the rubber band and glove and drop the giant ice hand into a bowl of punch. Feel free to get creative and add food colouring.

QUESTION: I have all three of your books and enjoy giving them out as gifts. I do however have a question and I could not find the answer in your books. My son bought a $40 baseball hat; I nearly fell over when I saw the price tag. The worst part is the hat is white. What is the best way to clean it? I have heard it's okay to put it in the dishwasher or washing machine. Any suggestions? Shirley, Winnipeg

ANSWER: I would be very careful about fabric care on this one. Forget about risking the dishwasher; while dishwasher detergent works well sometimes, it often leaves small irreversible spots on the fabric where bleach from the dishwasher touched the hat. Too risky. The washing machine may also work but can damage the rim of the hat, leaving it flimsy or misshapen. Too risky. Instead, soak the hat in a bowl of enough hot water to cover the hat, half a teaspoon of dish soap and half a cup of borax. …