Another creative (not sure where she gets the energy) idea from my talented friend Jessica. Who, by the way lives in Winterpeg (Winnipeg in case you aren’t from around these parts) and happened to have penned a series of “edge of your seat” novels (currently working on the last of the trilogy) that will also leave you shivering. You can go spy on her over on Good Reads.
My cousin made these ice candle hurricanes a few years ago, and while I gave them the old college try last year, the insane cold and excessive snow turned my regular indifference toward winter into a full-on rage, so I never really succeeded.
This year, fresh with the hope of a milder winter (a girl can dream), I decided to give them another go. While they look complicated, these hurricanes are about as easy as making… well… ice.
I am lucky enough to have a few large 5-gallon and 6-gallon pails, and I’m all about making things as big as possible, so I used those. You can use an ice-cream pail, but you’ll need to watch them more closely otherwise you’ll just end up with a solid block of ice.
First off, boil an insane amount of water. Boiled water makes for clearer ice, though I find that with my well-water, I get kind of a streaky look, but that adds to the “perfection in imperfections” schtick that I like. You can use distilled water or RO water which will also freeze clear, but I’m not about to buy water when I have it coming out of my tap (call me crazy).
Fill your pails and plunk them outside to freeze. The key to these is to freeze them long enough that the outside of the water freezes, but there is still a large cavity of water in the middle. For me it took about 24 hours (and the temperature was about -15C). Once you figure it’s frozen enough, bring it inside and let it sit for about 10-15 minutes to thaw enough to slide it out of the pail.
The thinnest area of ice is found at the bottom of the pail, so slide it out upside-down into your sink, and take out some of your aggressions hacking through the ice.
Get some mittens and don’t wear your best silk PJs for the next part (though I NEVER, EVER do anything while still in my PJs) because you will likely get wet and the water is COLD. Flip the giant hunk of ice over and spill the water inside down the drain (or in my case, all over the counter).
Once it’s empty, take it back outside and set it in the snow to let anything wet re-freeze. Don’t put it on the steps or something like that, because it might freeze to it, and that just seems like a pain.
Once it’s nice and frozen again, place them wherever you want , plop a candle or a string of mini-lights inside and enjoy.