1. To make the syrup,
combine the ginger, 2 cups of the sugar, and the water in a medium
saucepan and bring to a boil over high heat. Reduce the heat and simmer
until syrupy or reduced by half, 40 to 45 minutes. The syrup will thicken
as it cools so don’t over-reduce it. Strain the syrup and reserve the
2. Preheat the oven to 225 F. To make the candy, place the remaining 2
cups sugar in a large bowl, add the ginger, and toss to coat on all sides.
Place the ginger on a baking sheet and bake until dried but still chewy,
about 3 hours.
3. To make the floats, fill four 8 ounce glasses with the club soda. Pour
2 tablespoons of the ginger syrup down the side of each glass (4 if you
prefer a sweeter float). Squeeze a lime wedge into each drink, add a scoop
of the ice cream, and garnish with a mint sprig. Serve with the candy.
Lemongrass Ice Cream
3 cups milk
8 lemongrass stalks, white
parts only, sliced ¼ inch thick
1 vanilla bean, preferably Tahitian, split lengthwise and scraped
¾ cup egg yolks (5 to 6 large eggs)
1 cup plus 2 tablespoons sugar
2 cups heavy cream
In a non reactive medium saucepan, combine
the milk, lemongrass, and
vanilla bean and heat
over medium heat until scalded. Turn
and simmer until the mixture is reduced
by one-third, about 15 minutes.
the heat and allow to steep at least 1 hour and
overnight; the longer it steeps, the
more flavor will develop.
return the milk to the saucepan,
and bring just to
the point of
Meanwhile, fill a medium bowl with cold water and add ice. In a
non reactive medium bowl, combine the yolks and the sugar and whisk to
blend. Add a ladleful of the scalded milk mixture to the yolk mixture, mix
well, and transfer the tempered yolk mixture to the saucepan. Cook over
medium heat, whisking, until thickened, about 5 minutes. Do not overcook
or the eggs will scramble.
Strain the mixture into a medium bowl, and place it in the bowl of
ice water to cool. When cool, add the cream, and stir to blend. Freeze in
an ice cream maker following the manufacturers instructions. Do not over
harden, the ice cream should have a soft consistency. Transfer to
Cardamom Ice Cream. Use 8 crushed cardamom pods or ½ tablespoon
toasted ground cardamom in place of the lemongrass. Steep the cardamom in
the milk and proceed as above.