In honor of preparations for New Year’s Eve 2014 @TheYLife embarked on a quest to find ready to serve GF, Vegan and Nut Free sweet treats… it may not sound like an easy feat, but that’s when we discovered Whoopie Pies!
Whoopies! Are light and fluffy pastries created by Leslie Kaplan and Carolyn Shulevitz, also known as, The Piping Gourmets. I must confess, the second I tasted the Vanilla Lemon Whoopie I did a double take to re-check the ingredients. You see, for those of us prone to allergies, eating pastries vicariously through the taste buds of others is the norm, so I simply could not believe I had found a delicious alternative that could be as tasty for me as for my family.
So I knew I had to write and share the good news with all of my @TheYLife friends! In October 2010, The Piping Gourmets a WBENC certified woman owned company started sharing a line of all natural and gluten free desserts that are classic slices of Americana. Ready. Set. Cupcake! Are also on the Piping menu and are quite the perfect accompaniment for a glass of champagne and a midnight kiss.
We sat down with GF sweets magicians Kaplan and Shulevitz, to better understand why being all natural, certified GFCO, Vegan and Kosher (dairy free, egg free) and Non GMO is so important…
First and foremost, I wondered what had inspired The Piping Gourmet to create a product- line of baked good for people with allergic intolerances…
“Our initial goal was to create a line of innovative all-natural, healthier desserts-some dairy free and egg free… In addition to an all-natural, healthier dessert, we found a high demand for gluten- free, dairy free innovative dessert… The number of people with food allergies and food intolerances is growing dramatically and we want to be a leader in this dessert category offering major allergen free scrumptious desserts.”
I agree that allergic intolerances are consuming society more and more in recent years, I wanted to know if The Piping Gourmets lived their lives free of Gluten, Nuts and Dairy as well?
“We have five children between us both all with different food allergies and food sensitivities to dairy, eggs, soy and gluten… Carolyn being the baker was always baking for her son without using dairy and eggs and always had to provide his own dessert for school birthday celebrations. It was a natural progression for Carolyn to carry over her own cake recipes.”
So, I had to ask, how do you’ all come up with concepts for sweet treats that will work well with allergen free ingredients?
“We listen to what consumers want and analyze the growing market trends. The top growing markets today are gluten free, kosher and Non GMO…hence our desserts are this and more being vegan too- egg free and dairy free.”
In comparison to just a few years ago, the market is exploding with allergen friendly options… What social change occurred for the market to become more allergen friendly?
“There are several theories for why more and more people have allergies from the population growth increasing the percentage of people with allergies to the overuse of antibiotics affecting our systems to the “hygiene hypothesis”, being too clean and our bodies needing to attack-so they attack food proteins… The trend towards eating healthier is the best asset for one’s personal portfolio and the number one solution to the healthcare crisis.”
The Whoopie Pies are a perfect bite size option for Holiday Parties, any ideas for using your baked goods the Holiday Season?
“Great question! There are different ideas based on different food allergies that someone is trying to avoid. You may cut it in quarters and edge the sides in colorful sprinkles, chopped nuts, granola, mini chocolate chips or crushed peppermint sticks. Or you can simply sprinkle powdered sugar on top!”
We know ‘The Piping Gourmets‘ products can be found in the frozen dessert aisle in Whole Foods Markets, Epicure Markets and Wynn’s Market in Florida, but when can we find them in other states?
“Beginning in February 2014 The Piping Gourmets will also have distribution in Whole Foods Markets – South, Mid-Atlantic and Pacific North West regions as well as in Harris Teeter in the Mid-Atlantic region, Northeast independent markets and on the Gluten Free Mall – an on line shopping site.”
One thing that makes ‘The Piping Gourmets‘ unique is that the desserts are Made In The USA!
For more information, log onto www.thepipinggourmets.com