Friday, 25 July 2014

Treasure Hunt... for new Dairy Free Co Yo Morello Cherry Yoghurt

Important update (21/02/18):

Due to a problem with a supplier, Co-yo has just announced a small amount of dairy has been found in one of their products. Please check out their Face Book page for further details, to see if any Co-yo you have bought has been affected. They have now cancelled this supplier.

'Stop the clock!'

Today, I'm Anneka Rice... and I've been hunting for treasure - dairy free of course!

Remember Anneka? Blonde, clad in (tight) bright jumpsuits, leaping from helicopters, following clues, in search of treasure, on behalf of studio-bound contestants. She was a presenter on that eighties TV programme - Treasure Hunt!!

Well, OK, I'm not blonde, clad in jumpsuit, enviable figure etc. and there's definitely no helicopter in sight, but I've found some treasure!

'What?' You may well be wondering...

It's this: 

My treasure!

For me, personally (and you may not agree with me), it is one of those 'Holy Grail' products - you know, akin to one you used to LOVE and haven't been able to eat ever since you've made the change (gone dairy free I mean - not the menopause, just in case you're wondering)!

My absolute fave yoghurt of all time in my pre dairy free days was a Morello Cherry Muller Fruit Corner. Have you ever tried one??

I didn't have it all the time - but now and again, I would allow myself one as a treat.

Well, now I have found my dairy free equivalent - the Morello Cherry version of Co Yo. It's thick and it's creamy with the delicious sweet, yet slightly tart, compote of cherry layered beneath.


I've enjoyed plain Co Yo for some time, and not just as a yoghurt. I love using it in place of sour cream in fajitas, or as an accompaniment to apple crumble, or some other fruit dessert, in place of cream or custard.

BUT this Morello Cherry Co Yo I can enjoy just for being itself, and believe me, all 125g of it can disappear pretty fast!

Now you know I rate it for flavour, what else might you need to know?

What's in it?

Coconut Milk (87%), Morello Cherry (12%) (Cherries, Natural Fruit Etracts of Apple, Grape and Carob), Tapioca starch, Live Vegan Cultures.

And, crucially for me - what's not in it is: dairy, gluten and soya. The fact that there's no added sugar is a bonus!

What I would like to see in it is some added calcium - it's one of those things that dairy free peeps could really do with!

Where can I get it?

I first came across it at The Allergy and Free From Show in London, but obviously that's once a year and I couldn't transport any home with me, as I couldn't keep it cool. Although plain Co Yo is now available in  larger branches of Tesco, along with a few others, the cherry version has not yet made it onto the shelves. However, I gather that pretty soon it might become available through Ocado. 

For the time being, I've managed to persuade my nearest Health Food Shop to stock it - they're good like that - they're very open to suggestions. It seems to have paid off for them already, because it's been flying off the shelves of their fridge!! Consequently, I've had to wait a few weeks to get my hands on some, but today... today I managed it!!

If you want to get hold of some, I suggest you try the same!

How much is it?

This is the bit that is the hardest to talk about - especially with other Free From mums, who, I know, are trying to balance the budget. We all know, from experience, that Free From products come at a price. 

BUT, back to the actual cost... in my Health Food Shop it's £1.99 for 125g. I'm guessing this is probably more or less what you'd be charged elsewhere too!

It's true that Co Yo is a lot more expensive than 'normal' yoghurt, but bear in mind that this is the dairy free yoghurt equivalent of artisan bread or chocolate - it's not produced on the same commercial scale as 'normal' yoghurt, so it's going to cost!!

Co Yo is, in fact, the only completely dairy free fresh coconut probiotic yoghurt, that I know of, in the UK. Another firm makes coconut yoghurt that claims to be dairy free, but they produce their yoghurt in a factory where products made from cow's milk are also made. My daughter, being so sensitive to dairy, is unable to have this other yoghurt - it does NOT work for us! I have been assured that this is not so with Co Yo. 

So I reckon I'm paying for peace of mind - that there's no risk of cross-contamination. 

As a special dairy free treat... I think it's worth it!

Related Post:

Heaven in a mouthful? Co Yo Coconut Yoghurt

Tuesday, 22 July 2014

Life's a Dairy Free Almond Breeze!

If you're dairy free, a grown up, love coffee, are fine with almonds and Carageenan, and you haven't bought this product yet, I've got to ask you, 'Why on earth not?' 

Especially as they're only £1 each in Tesco at the moment!

If, like me, you've been dairy free, breast feeding for a whole lot longer than you imagined you would and are feeling a little left out by life as a result, this is the perfect little 'Pick-Me-Up.' An ideal dairy free refreshment too, for combating the recent heat wave!

I have to confess, one of the things I love about this product is that it's a proper grown-up drink! I also love the fact that it has not been made with soya milk first!

A grown-up drink, not dissimilar to other 'normal' versions!

What do I mean by that? Just that, speaking as a soya free bod (I'm intolerant to soya) everything dairy free seems to be made first with soya - until someone catches on and thinks,  'Oh! why don't we make that with coconut milk or almond milk instead?' This 'catching on' can sometimes take a fair bit of time!

Made by Almond Breeze, an American firm, whose almond milks can be purchased in most good, large supermarkets, there are two flavours: Mocha and Cappuchino. I've tried both and both hit the spot for me - that's even though I thought I wouldn't enjoy the Mocha as I'm not usually a huge fan of mixing my coffee with my chocolate! But, actually, they don't taste that much differently from each other, although the Mocha may taste marginally sweeter.


What's in them?

Mocha ingredients: 
Spring Water, Raw Cane Sugar, Almonds (1.4%), Fat-reduced Cocoa, Acidity Regulator: Dipotassium Phosphate; Calcium Carbonate, Sea Salt, Stabiliser: Caragennan, Gellan Gum; Emulsifier: Sunflower Lecithin. High Caffeine, 11.5mg/100ml.

Cappuccino ingredients:
Spring Water, Raw Cane Sugar, Almonds (1.4%), Acidity Regulator: Dipotassium Phosphate; Calcium Carbonate, Sea Salt, Stabiliser: Caragennan, Gellan Gum; Emulsifier: Sunflower Lecithin. High Caffeine, 11.5mg/100ml.

In addition, they state they are:
  • Free from Dairy, Eggs and Lactose.
  • No soya, Peants, Gluten or MSG.

What about the caffeine?

Well, it's made with coffee, so it stands to reason there's caffeine in these drinks. 40mg of caffeine per 100ml, to be precise. As each bottle contains 250ml of iced coffee, that's 100mg of caffeine per bottle. 

To put this into context, there's 32mg of caffeine in a can of Coca Cola and 150mg of caffeine in a Starbucks Grande Latte although this was contested by Chemical and Engineering News who reckon said latte contains 330mg (WOWZERS!! 

If you're pregnant, it's recommended, by the NHS, that you drink no more than 200mg of caffeine per day. 

For those who are breastfeeding, there is no clear advice. NHS advice recommends drinking caffeine 'occasionally,' i.e. not everyday, but other places suggest otherwise. Personally, I'd follow Kelly Moms advice, which is  to take your cue from your baby - if it's not sleeping, cut down the caffeine!!

Where can you get them?

I've only seen them in Tesco, so far - in the chilled section, alongside all the 'normal' iced coffees, rather than the 'Free From' section. They can be found in Tescos of all different sizes, which makes them quite handy, to get hold of. In my Tesco, they're quite close to the cow's milk.

Sold alongside 'normal' iced coffee!

How much are they?

Normally they're priced at £1.29 but right now they're on offer at £1. I hope the fact that they're on offer doesn't mean they're struggling. I hope they're around for a lot longer yet, as I genuinely think that even if I didn't have to be dairy free I'd enjoy drinking them. 

As for me, whilst they're on offer, I'm buying them like they're going out of fashion! Well you've got to make the most of an offer like this, haven't you?

As it happens, they slip down the throat so well, I've just drunk two whilst writing this post! Oops!!

If you looking for other Dairy Substitutes, such as milk, cream, cheese, yogurt and ice cream, why not check out this page on the blog:

Friday, 11 July 2014

My Allergy Show 2014 Highs... and Lows??

Well, that's it for another year! The Allergy and Free From Show is over!             


Well unless you're heading to Liverpool in September of course!

Bit far north for me, though!

I think I made the most of my time there though!

Last year, I complained about the lack of space. It was good to see that the Show organisers had taken this on board!

This year, the London Show was held in The Grand Hall at Olympia... which was great!! 
SO much more space than last year!! 


Obligatory show interior pic - all the best blog posts have 'em ;)

...all that lovely green carpet!! Well, that's the Free From bit!

The space was also shared with the V-Delicious Show, The Back Pain Show and Love Natural Love Organic but there was room enough for us all! It was definitely worth planning my visit ahead though, 'cos I realised that some bits that I might have considered 'Free From' were included in the V-Delicious Show area or the Organic area.

SO, the date dawned bright and fair, but my 'date' stood me up!!! She was required elsewhere - 'Mum's Taxi' duties lured her away. Oh well!! As a result, I ended up travelling up to London with The Hub and 'Baby'. They enjoyed Allergy Adventures activities, then disappeared off to the Science Museum - leaving me to roam at will!!

What did I get up to??

I listened and learned:

This year, I opted to devote some of my time to the Spotlight session on Food Allergy, featuring Dr Adam Fox and Tanya Wright. It cost £10, but was well worth it! 

Dr Adam Fox is a well-renowned expert and talks a mile a minute. His talk was jam-packed full of really useful information! He covered aspects such as understanding when food allergy might realistically be outgrown (takes longer than previously thought), assessing risk in terms of how likely a fatal anaphylactic reaction might be as well as in avoiding allergens and how to induce tolerance of an allergen - all very worthwhile topics!! I'd definitely recommend attending his talk, another time.

Tanya Wright, a specialist allergy dietitian followed - her talk entitled: 'Coping with Children that are Challenging to Feed.' Some of what she shared wasn't new to me, but the section on how allergic children can have food aversion really struck a chord with me! Food refusal has definitely been an issue for us, so it was really interesting to hear about what might be causing this and how this problem could be tackled. 

Tanya Wright's talk was followed by an interesting Q. and A. session in which the good old question about allergies and bad behaviour came up! I know a lot of us 'Allergy Mums' have found our children's behaviour challenging when they have had an exposure to their allergen, so my ears pricked up at this bit! 

What I found interesting was her explanation for this - that the behaviour was actually a signal that the child was experiencing a reaction of some kind that perhaps they couldn't express, or was 'normal' for them, but was actually discomforting them. I don't know about you, but that really made sense to me!!

I lurked:

I was hoping for a chance to catch up with some of the allergy peeps from Twitter, some of whom were on the Allergy Adventures stand. However, each time I went by, they were all busy - but that's a good thing eh?

Allergy Adventures in action!

I was also hoping to catch Peggy of Glamour Puds too, but each time I visited she was deep in conversation with her customers, so I purchased  an 'Allergy Show Special' Bakewell Tart from her assistant and moved on!

Very good it was too!

Yes, dear reader, I ate the lot! 

I'm looking forward to being reunited with some of her other creations in Tesco, very soon!

I lunched:

After the talk, it was definitely time for lunch! Short of time in the morning, my plan for taking a wrap disappeared, so instead I headed for the 'Free From Cafe,' which was tucked away near the back of the Allergy Adventures area.

To my delight, I discovered I could get a gluten, and dairy free lunch (I had to guess at the soya free bit, as I couldn't see a proper label).

Healthy and Free From!

I also grabbed a packet of Ten Acre Salt and Vinegar Crisps - gluten, dairy and soya free! Result!

I actually didn't need these - I just grabbed them because I could!!

As I made my way through the cafe I saw the table with cutlery, napkins etc. bore two kinds of dairy free milk. Wouldn't it be great if all cafes did this? 

Anyone for dairy free milk?

Sadly the other cafes at the venue did not :(

There were other Free From options available though!

Debbie and Andrew's sausages sold gluten and dairy free hot dogs - not soya free unfortunately, as the rolls were Dietary Specials, and made with soya protein, so no good for me, but the stall seemed to be doing a roaring trade.

Vegusto dairy free cheese, meanwhile, had dairy and gluten free 'cheese' sandwiches available for those who can tolerate cashews (I can't).

The Vegusto sandwiches looked 'normal'!

And various Vegan options (therefore dairy and egg free) were available too! 

I looked around:

My tactic this year was mainly to avoid buying anything that needed to keep cold, anything I could buy locally (unless it was priced too good to miss) but concentrate on things that were new (that I would be unlikely to find elsewhere) or that I would otherwise have to buy online and pay postage for!

This was my final haul:

All the best blogs have these pics too!  ;)

So I visited: 
  • Lovemore - they had nearly sold out of their O'Choccos, which I love
  • BFree - I wanted to get hold of one of their new Fajita kits as well as their bagels
  • Venice Bakery - their gluten, dairy soya and nut free pizzas  (with Mozzarisella) were definitely NOT to be missed!!
  • Warbutons - loved their spiced fruit loaf samples

Pleased to see the dairy free, soya free margarine!

  • Orgran - their gluten free pasta was really well-priced at the show
  • Barkat - makers of the only dairy, gluten and soya free digestives that I know of, that aren't made with oats!
  • Vegusto - I wanted to try their cheese sauce, which, unlike their cheese, does not contain cashew! It can be kept out of the fridge for 48 hours, so was perfect for transportation!

It looks like sausage, but trust me, it's not!

  • Isola Bio's dairy free milk and cream - their range has really expanded, which is brilliant. They are not fortified with calcium, though, as they are Organic.

A small selection

  • Focaccia Per Tutti - a sensation at the 'Free From Food Awards' this year. Sadly, they were so popular, that there wasn't much left on their stand, by the time I got there!
  • Hotch Potch - one of my finds at the Wessex Ceoliac Fair last Autumn (they make gluten and dairy free Scotch Eggs) were also on my list but were so popular that they had SOLD OUT, by the time I reached the stand! Boo hoo!
  • Ms Cupcake - a Vegan bakery, which made everything gluten free for the Show and quite a few offerings that were soya free too!! If you've never tasted her wares, trust me - this is amazing (and it's in her cook book)!! 

A Nanaimo Bar!

I did also find time to visit old faves Pudology and Co-yo, but didn't think I'd get them home. However, I learned that it was best for them that we buy them locally at Tesco - each sale is a 'tick' that counts towards their viability as a product on the shelves of the supermarket. I have to say, I loved the new cherry Co-yo - will have to look out for that one!

I left: 

By about half past three, although I would have loved to have hung around for a bit longer, my trolley and a big bag were bulging, protesters were lying all over Kensington High Street, and so it was time to go and rescue The Hub, who was stranded at the other end, with 'Baby,' who was threatening to fall asleep!!


By then... I was pooped, anyway!!

Back again next year?? I certainly hope so!!

Related Posts:

Fancy a date - at the Allergy and Free From Show 2014?

The Allergy Show - Mission Accomplished