A new vegan soft serve ice cream is being launched for Norfolk Day
- Credit: Archant
Ronaldo Ices and Tofurei, both in Norwich, have teamed up to create the popular frozen dessert.
Dreamy, lickable, whipped soft serve ice cream is all over social media at the moment. Whirled into charcoal cones, festooned with 'fairy dust' and crowned with sparkly candyfloss, the dessert has become one of the biggest buzzes in 'Insta cool'.
Norwich-based Tofurei was ahead of the trend, launching its own soft serve just a year after opening at Pottergate in 2016. But now, in honour of Norfolk Day (july 27), the shop's joined forces with foodie heavyweight, Ronaldo Ices, to craft a very special, hyper-local vegan ice cream.
Steve Lepper, who co-founded Tofurei with Jenny McCann, says they've been trialling the new soft serve in the shop for a few weeks to see what customers think…and they've been so overwhelmed by the response (which has seen them continually run out of ice cream) that they will officially launch the product this Saturday.
"It's an interesting possibility to tie up with Ronaldo," Steve says. "They have a frozen and chilled network and that's what we're looking at later in the year. This is our third full year making soft serve but previously we imported a powder from an outfit in the States and it was costing as much to ship it across as it would to buy the stuff ready-made. We'd been looking for a local solution and found somewhere on the south coast doing a similar mix but that worked out even more expensive and wasn't as popular with customers. Ronaldo then approached us about using our soya milk to play with and we did some trialling with them. They moved into production with it last Friday and will be at Norwich Vegan Fair on Sunday with a soft scoop version.
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"We decided to launch this on Norfolk Day because we're both Proudly Norfolk members and we thought it would be good to do something special - we'll have promotions on the ice cream on the day."
The vanilla flavour ice cream is made entirely with Tofurei's own soya milk, produced using UK-grown soya beans (from Essex but soon again from Norfolk), both in soft serve and shortly in 300ml tubs to take home. "Once the season's over," says Steve, "we'll think about new flavours and evaluate how it's gone."
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A range of wafers, sprinkles, vegan 'Smarties' and sauces are available to jazz up the ice cream in store. And it will also be on sale at several local restaurants, Ellie's sweet shop in Sheringham, and is available now for wholesale customers.
Later this year the shop is hoping to launch its own tempeh. And there are plans to open a second store in the autumn where hot food will be on sale alongside Tofurei's popular deli counter items.