Sam and Dannii Catchpole with their daughter Bella in their mobile icecream van.
Sam and Dannii Catchpole with their daughter Bella in their mobile icecream van. john mccutcheon

The Coast frozen treat that's a national first

SAM and Dannii Catchpole's 7-year-old daughter Bella is not complaining about their new career move, which has delivered an ice-cream van to the driveway of her Coolum Beach home. Permanently.

The couple work at a Peregian Beach childcare centre but a year ago decided to set up a business of their own, making fresh "ice-cream curls" at events and markets.

Icecream Curls turns Maleny Dairy milk and cream to twisted rolls of ice-cream in front of your eyes, in a teppanyaki-style show for customers, says Mr Catchpole.

The use of an ice pan gave the technique its colloquial name, "fried ice-cream", but there's nothing deep fried about these frozen treats.

Neither is it like any ice-cream you're likely to have encountered, says Mr Catchpole, who claims their fledgling business is the first of its kind in Australia.


"It's not a scoop out of the container and there you go - it's a bit of a show. We have a vanilla base and we mix everything into it," he said.

"When you freeze it you've got to do it really quick.

"Zero crystals form the way we do it and it's the smoothest ice-cream you can get."

He and Mrs Catchpole chop chocolate and other treats "teppanyaki-style" to add to the ice-cream, which is made using the ice pan in front of customers.

Originally from Britain, Mr Catchpole said his love of English ice-cream trucks influenced the career move.

"Every Friday the ice-cream van would come round and we'd stand in the rain and the snow for an ice-cream," he said.

Australians rarely had that option, which was bizarre given our warmer climate, he said.

His hunch that a new kind of frozen sweet would go down a treat on the Sunshine Coast was correct - on Icecream Curls' first night at the Peregian Springs Havana Nights Markets it sold out, and its earlier appearance at Eumundi Markets was also popular.

"People love it," Mr Catchpole said. "We always have a line up."

Find Icecream Curls at Peregrian Springs at Havana Nights Markets from 4-8pm on the second and fourth Saturday of the month or visit