Fort Collins, CO ~ Let’s hear it for coconuts! This previously underestimated tropical fruit is now being used for everything from fueling cars to cleaning products to ice cream….yes, that’s right, ice cream! In recent years the health benefits of coconut oil have been promoted by informed health care practitioners as an alternative to polyunsaturated vegetable and trans fats. Coconut milk is a creamy, non-dairy, cholesterol free product made up of medium chain triglycerides identical to those found in human breast milk …
Medium chain triglycerides have been shown to have anti-microbial, anti-viral properties, and as a stable fat, have been shown to be an antioxidant protecting blood vessels from the damaging effects of other less stable oils. Coconut oil has been shown in recent studies to improve cholesterol profiles, lowering LDL and raising HDL levels in the blood. It also decreases the release of cortisol, the stress hormone and stabilizes blood sugar levels. Finally, it has been shown to promote thyroid tissue and hormone transport, thus increasing metabolism. In fact, coconut oil products are beginning to be sold as “weight loss” supplements.
So, you ask, what does this have to do with ice cream? Coconut milk is approximately 18% fat…comparable to butterfat in ice cream. This happy fact led three Colorado entrepreneurs to formulate a delicious alternative to ice cream that doesn’t contain soy or dairy products. The idea arose in January 2007 when Amanda Shallcross, a board-certified naturopathic physician, talked her aunt, Leslie Vogt and uncle, Greg Belcher, into starting Sid Wiggy’s Coconut Creations, a company dedicated to providing a guilt free ice cream alternative that tastes every bit as good as traditional ice cream. That winter found Leslie in her Fort Collins kitchen creating the flavors currently being marketed: Vanilla Voodoo, Chocolate Cay, Macarena Mint, Caribbean coffee and Coconut’n Else. Soon it was time to try the recipes in a commercial ice cream freezer to get the proper consistency. The owner of Fort Collins-based Walrus Ice Cream Parlor, John Paugh, generously let Sid Wiggys use his commercial freezer to run batches for the first nine months of business. “Without John’s help, Sid Wiggy’s would have had a really hard time getting off the ground,” said Leslie. “I’d still be making our product in my home machine and jack hammering it out of the containers.”
Skillful marketing and a unique recipe which produced an amazingly creamy and healthy non-dairy frozen dessert brought Sid Wiggy’s to where it is now…available in select Whole Foods, Vitamin cottages and Food Coops in the Denver, Boulder, and Fort Collins areas.