"You've never heard of Coyo?!"
Those were the words that came out of my colleague's mouth, as we sat there at work one day. And despite the inference that I might have heard of it, the word "Coyo" was a new one to me. She carried on:
"There's a woman at my weight loss club who's addicted to it. She's slathers it on porridge every day. She absolutely loves it."
To be honest, any kind of food associated with weight loss tends to make my eyes glaze over. My judgemental self instantly assumes that there'll be no flavour or pleasure associated with it, and I file it under the section in my head that says "do not bother". But, the thing that piqued my interest with this Coyo thing, was that it was made entirely out of coconut milk. Over the last few years, I've fallen for all things coconutty. Coconut water: check. Coconut oil: check. But coconut yogurt made entirely from coconut? No, this I hadn't tried.
So that evening, on a tip from my colleague that Coyo is sold at the not-so-cheap health food mecca that is Wholefoods, I made a detour on the way home. There in the chilled section were cool tubs of Coyo. Opting for plain and chocolate flavours, I put a few tubs of varying sizes into my basket and headed straight for the till via the salad bar, and the chocolate aisle. Once purchases were made, I grabbed a disposable spoon and headed up to Wholefood's dining bar to try it out.
And the verdict? It's pretty hard to believe there's no dairy in this thing. It's basically pure, snow white coconut milk, whipped into what tastes like a cooling yogurt full of coconut flavour accompanied by a satisfying, slightly sour tang. The chocolate version serves up a moreish hint of cocoa, and was my favourite of the two but I have a lot of love for both. The coconut flavour is natural and delicious, but what really makes you come back for more is the texture - creamy and silky, it's an absolute pleasure to keep spooning this stuff into your mouth.
Plus it's dairy-free, gluten-free and vegan with no added sugar which means it should taste horrible but it thankfully doesn't. If you're getting skeptical at this point Coyo has so far bagged a gold Great Taste Award, along with winning status at the Freefrom Food Awards and The Natural & Organic Awards 2012. But perhaps it's not so shocking that this stuff tastes great without dairy in it. Coconut is pretty lovely on its own, and if you're a fan of it, you're not likely to mind a product that's brimming with it. Which is probably a good time to mention that Coyo does ice cream too, with flavours including Natural, Sticky Date and Tamarind, Raw Chocolate, Mango and Lime, Vanilla & Nutmeg and Pina Colada.
If you're nuts about coconut, Coyo is one to watch.
Coyo coconut milk yogurt comes in 4 flavours: Natural, Mixed Berry, Chocolate, Mango, and Pineapple. For more information about Coyo, visit www.coyo.co.uk/products/index.htm or follow Coyo on Twitter: @coyo_uk
**Written by: **Helenka Bednar