A vegan and fruity pick me up, perfect for any time of day
Many people turn to smoothies when they are trying to lose weight, or eat healthier, or feel better about the 3 pieces of bougatsa they had the night before. We get it, and that’s okay. But we’re here to tell you that there’s another reason to enjoy smoothies – because they are delicious! And, they are a fun way to get some fruits, veggies and other goodies into people (kids? husbands?) who may otherwise be less inclined to welcome them into their diet.
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A soft centered ginger molasses cookie with a hint of orange
You may recall us telling you that growing up we didn’t know what gingerbread cookies were. Ginger, in any form, was not an ingredient used in our childhood Greek kitchen. When one of us was a teenager, rebelling against traditional Greek cuisine (what were we thinking?!), we purchased the Better Homes and Gardens Cookies for Christmas Cookbook. We still have that book and its stained, dog-eared and kind of smelly pages are a testament to just how much we use it when holiday baking season arrives. In that book we discovered a whole new world of cookie goodness that went well beyond melomakarona, kourabiethes and koulourakia . In that book we were introduced to florentines, and shortbread, and gingerbread men, gingerbread houses, and gingersnaps. Ginger became a new fascination, and obsession.
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Deviled eggs made with spinach, feta and ricotta
Sponsored by Egg Farmers of Canada
Every day is special; of that there is no doubt! Whether it is a birthday, an anniversary, the first day of college or the first day of retirement, life is full of small and grand moments that beg to be celebrated.
These days we find it especially important to look for the positives. There is no denying that our world has changed, at least temporarily, and it’s easy to become overwhelmed and blinded to the beauty of the everyday and the goodness that surrounds us. But, it’s especially during trying times that we need to shift our focus, and zero in on the positive; not to ignore everything else, but to be reminded that hope and heroes exist!
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Thick, buttery pancakes topped with syrupy fresh peaches in a sweet buttery sauce.
Do you object to butter? Do you aim to have the first meal of the day be one full of fiber, protein and all natural goodness? If the answer is yes to either of these questions, then you best move along; this is not a breakfast for lightweights.
Funny thing is, our parents who are the inspiration behind Mia Kouppa would shake their heads at these pancakes and peach topping. They rarely cook with butter and would find a breakfast such as this one too decadent, too heavy, too buttery and too far from their typical breakfast choices of Greek-style hard boiled eggs, Greek yogourt or tomato and feta toast.
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An Italian-inspired dessert full of summer strawberry goodness
Have you ever heard of philotomo? Even if you have never heard the word, if you have had the joy of visiting Greece, or known any Greeks, you have experienced it we’re sure. We’ve wanted to write about philotomo for a while, but have been hesitant because we suspect that anyone unfamiliar with the term would not be able to appreciate its significance by simply reading about it. Alas, that’s all we can do for now, so we’ll do our best. We’ll also somehow link it to this strawberry ricotta cake with olive oil, we promise!
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A dairy-free coffee cake loaded with blueberries, almond flavour and a subtle hint of orange
It’s not quite blueberry picking season here in Quebec; that activity usually begins in August, but we like to plan ahead. Having experienced days under the hot sun, with legs stiff from squatting down for hours plucking berries off of low bushes, we know that it can be exhilarating, but overwhelming to face baskets of blueberries, with no clear idea what to do with them all. This blueberry almond cake is one delicious option.
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Delicious muffins filled with dry fruits and bursting with citrus flavour
Our mother used to make a citrus bundt cake when we were young and she would puree an entire orange, peel and all, and then add it to the batter. One day we had a neighbourhood friend over while she was getting ready to bake this cake and we all decided to keep her company in the kitchen; our motivation being to lick the batter from the bowl and spoon before they got tossed in the sink for washing. As we settled in to watch her progress, we were surprised by our friend’s reaction to watching her blend the orange. She leaned over and whispered, “You’re not supposed to eat the peel!”.
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Tsoureki french toast stuffed with chocolate hazelnut spread and banana
Whenever we go out for breakfast or brunch with our family one thing is certain; if there is a menu option which combines bananas and chocolate, someone will be ordering it. Everyone else will try to sneak a taste between bites of their own fruit cup and egg white omelet.
This winning combination of flavours can be enjoyed in so many ways. And in this post-Pascha period, when we are lucky enough to have some tsoureki left over, it only seemed natural to come up this!
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Baked oatmeal mini-muffins filled with healthy, vegan goodness
Who doesn’t want a healthy snack that satisfies a need for something sweet, a bit of crunch and just the right amount of chocolate? We certainly think that a recipe which checks all those boxes should be in everyone’s repertoire.
What we love most about these vegan oatmeal cups is that they can be whipped together in only a few minutes, require very little baking skill, and can be enjoyed by almost everyone. Vegan? These are good for you! Gluten-free or Celiac? These are good for you too! Extremely picky? Well there’s no guarantee, but we think you’ll find these pretty okay!
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Fried dough, sometimes called Greek-style pancakes, topped with honey
How fitting that we are posting this recipe for tiganites, sometimes referred to as Greek pancakes, in early November. Fitting, because November is when much of the olive harvesting in Greece is occurring. Our mother remembers that when the men of the village set out to begin their long and hard days of manually picking olives from the trees, they were sent off with their satchels loaded with tiganites. These disks of fried dough helped to sustain them and nourish them for the day. Tiganites, she explained, were a great option when options were limited as they are made from ingredients that even the poorest family likely had on hand.
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