Ice cream is a really wonderful thing for an upset stomach.  And I mean really wonderful.  When we get glutened around here, it gets really hard to eat, or even drink water — the week Jocelyn was getting to know her new baby (and covering for me), I was getting IV fluids several days in a row because I couldn’t get even one mouthful of liquid down my throat.  Things are better by now, of course, but not always by much, so I’ve had to work to be able to get enough calories in a day from time to time.

Ice cream is the natural fallback, at least for our brand of celiac disease:  When my sister Amanda was in college, still undiagnosed, unable to force herself to eat a thing because it caused her so much pain, she’d fall back on either raspberry-filled donuts from Shipley’s, or banana ice cream with nuts mixed in for some protein.  The donuts would be delicious enough that she’d eat them despite the utter absence of her appetite (according to her, you can burn out half a rat’s brain so it won’t normally eat, but it’ll still eat a delicacy), but the ice cream always went down more smoothly.  I don’t actually like “basic” ice cream that much, though, at least if by “basic” you mean “vanilla” — or at times even “chocolate”!

So why ginger?  Last year, when Jocelyn was pregnant with the aforementioned baby, and I was visiting them in Chicago, we went to a fantastic little restaurant that offered both vegetarian and gluten-free meals, and split an order of their ginger ice cream.  We both agreed it was fantastic stuff, and incredibly soothing to the stomach (always a valuable quality, in the war with morning sickness!).  When I set out to make some myself, though, I was a bit baffled by how complicated the recipes I found online were; I’ve made ice cream before, and in my experience the simpler the recipe, the better the result, especially when you’re an amateur twiddling in your kitchen at home.  (And anything that needs to be cooked on the stove first is right out.)  So I decided to make it my own way, extra simple.  When my stomach’s bad enough I churn out a batch of this at least once a week, and eat some when my stomach refuses to accept anything else.

You don’t need an ice cream maker to make ice cream:  If you don’t have one, just chill the ice cream mixture in the fridge till it’s cold, then put it in the freezer.  Take it out every 20-30 minutes to stir it up, making sure to scrape the thicker parts of the mixture off the sides of the bowl.  It’ll take up to 3 hours to get to the point of soft-serve, at which point you can just leave it in the freezer unmolested to freeze further.  If you’re hunting for an ice cream maker, I use this one.

Ginger Ice Cream

Yield:  1 1/2 quarts ice cream


  • 1 1/2 cups milk (2% is what I use)
  • 1 1/2 cups heavy cream
  • 1/3 cup brown sugar
  • 1/8 tsp ground ginger


1.  In a stand mixer, combine all ingredients.  With the whisk attachment, whip up the mixture at as high a speed as you can manage without splashing it everywhere, until it’s nice and frothy, like so:

2.  Get your ice cream maker ready, if you have one, and pour the mixture inside.  (If not, you can mix it yourself in the freezer like I described in the last paragraph above.)  Then just make the ice cream according to the ice cream maker’s specifications.  Here’s what it looks like with my machine, start and finish (about 30 minutes later):

3.  See? — simple.  It’ll be a nice, soft-serve consistency at this point, and you can just stick it in the freezer overnight to harden if you want.  Now eat up!