December 3rd, Holiday Challenge

Kouzounas Kitchen:

Yummy protein smoothie to try out. :)

Originally posted on What's for dinner, Doc?:

Today’s Challenge: Eat a protein rich breakfast every day.

Almond Joy protein smoothie

Almond Joy Protein Smoothie

Start your day with a protein rich meal. Examples: a protein smoothie, eggs, a Greek yogurt, an apple with a tablespoon of nut butter, or a protein breakfast bar.
When you eat protein in the morning you give your body a chance to rev up your overnight metabolism so you can begin burning calories early in the day. Protein stays in your stomach longer so you feel full longer. Protein doesn’t spike your blood sugar leaving you feeling hungry in 20 minutes like a sugary meal would. With a satisfied tummy, you will not feel drawn to the stale donuts or cookies that magically appear in the break room during the holiday season. Just say no to any sugary food that isn’t special and isn’t worth the calories. Grandma’s Famous Christmas cookie yes, store bought stale donut…

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Special Ingredient Game ( Collaboration From Health & Food Bloggers Mastermind Group)

Hello Hello my friends. On todays post, I am sharing a fun and unique SPECIAL INGREDIENT GAME that my friend Eleni from My Easy Gourmet came up with a few weeks ago. Here is the fun part: SPECIAL INGREDIENT ORANGE. You have to come up with 1 recipe that is either savory or sweet with our special ingredient. I love orange and it definitely falls under Winter food. I decided to do a savory recipe. Since I love love love quinoa I came up with a  Mediterranean Quinoa Salad Ala Orange Balsamic Vinaigrette. Sounds interesting right?! It was a very colorful and tasty dish in deed. Check out my recipe below along with my wonderful food bloggers who were also involved in this fun game. CHEERS~ 

Happy Holidays from Health & Food (2)

~Mediterranean Quinoa Salad Alla Orange Balsamic Vinaigrette~

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  • Ingredients:
  • 1 cup quinoa cook per package directions
  • 2 cups water
  • 1 cube chicken bouillon
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 3 scallions, chopped
  • 1/2 cup chopped kalamata olives
  • 1/2 cup crumbled feta cheese
  • 1 bell pepper, diced
  • 2 tablespoons pomegranate seeds
  • 1 tablespoon fresh oregano
  • 1/4 cup fresh chopped parsley
  • Pinch of sea salt
  • Pinch of ground pepper
  • 1/2 lemon, reserve juice
  • 1/4 cup olive oil
  • 1 orange, peel and cut in cubes.
  • 1 orange, reserve juice
  • 1/2 cup Balsamic Vinegar
  • 1 tablespoon butter


  1. Cook quinoa according to package. Place chicken bouillon in boiling water.
    Add garlic to water, and cook for about 15 minutes or until quinoa is done.
  2. Gather the scallions, kalamata olives, feta cheese, bell pepper, orange cubes, pomegranate seeds, herbs, and parsley in a large bowl. Mix to combine. Add the lemon juice, and olive oil over the mix. Add quinoa and mix to combine.
  3. In a small saucepan over medium heat, add the butter, balsamic vinegar, and orange juice. Cook until the sauce has thickened. (About three minutes.)
  4. Serve the Mediterranean quinoa salad on a plate, and gently drizzle the orange reduction over the top.
  5. ***This dish is paired wonderful with some focaccia bread.


~Special Ingredient Game Recipes~


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Mini Tiropita Bites (Cheese Pie Bites)

Mini Tiropita Bites (Cheese Pie Bites)

Serves: 24 Mini Bites

  • 1 Large muffin pan- lightly greased
  • 12 Sheets of phyllo dough
  • 2 Eggs beaten
  • 2 Tablespoons olive oil
  • 1/4 Cup diced scallions
  • 1 Cup cream cheese
  • 3 Tablespoons Parmesan cheese
  • 1/2 Cup crumbled feta cheese
  • Pinch of oregano
  • Pinch of fresh chopped dill
  • Cracked black pepper
  • Sea salt


  1. In a large bowl, add eggs, olive oil, scallions, cream cheese, Parmesan, feta, and spices. Whisk together, and make sure ingredients are combined.
  2. Place oven temperature on 400 degrees or 200 Celsius.
  3. In a large muffin pan, grease the inside of the pan, and set aside.
  4. Prepare 12 phyllo sheets, and place over a damp towel to prevent from drying.
  5. Cut large circles out of the phyllo dough, per sheet. You should be able to get 2 circles out of each sheet.
  6. Place one circle into the muffin pan, and then lightly brush olive oil over the phyllo.
  7. Make sure that the phyllo hangs over the muffin tin. Then add another circle over this one. (Creating two layers.)
  8. Once you have filled the muffin pan, place a heaping tablespoon of filling into each phyllo cup.
  9. Take the excess phyllo and mold to the edge of the muffin pan.
  10. Bake in oven for approximately 30 minutes or until golden brown on top.
  11. To serve: Add fresh chopped dill over the top.


~Happy Holidays~

kouzounas kitchen ffffkouzounas kitchen lll

Hello hello!! I must say it has been a long time since I have posted, and so much has been happening. Thank you to those who are patient with me while I go through our new journey at the Land Park Farmers Market. If you haven’t heard you can catch us every Sunday at the new Land Park Farmers Market from 9 AM to 1 PM. I finally got the chance to get into a market, and its been challenging but very fun, and awarding. I have met some wonderful people, and even had two returning customers from the past Sunday. If you are interested in checking us out, please do so at the link below. 

We offer a wide selection of Greek pastries as well as some French pastries. (Nutella croissants, orange marmalade croissants, lavender shortbread cookies, baklava, kourambiedes, koulourakia, brownies, and much more.) If you are local to Sacramento please come out and say hi!! I will post an updated menu every Saturday, that way you can see what we will have at the market. Please follow my Facebook page that way you can stay tuned in with our markets as well as our catering events.

For those who have wondered why I have vanished to never never land, lol here are the details. I am working on a few projects lately. We started a new food group on Facebook which is called Health & Food Bloggers Mastermind where we share wonderful recipes, talk about health related topics, and such. So far we have about 88 members, and the group continues to grow. I have also connected with Blessing over at Global Food Book and we started a new podcast channel. You may have seen me post some new podcast’s within the last few weeks, and I would love to hear your thoughts. I am really trying to network with many great food bloggers, and I have met some wonderful people!! Right now Featured Recipe Thursday will be on wraps until January, as well as Friday Menu. I am re vamping my food blog, and switching some categories around, so we will have a new Kouzounas Kitchen up and running shortly. (I promise it will be a good change.)

Something fun I have been up to is….. We started a new ingredient game in our fb group,and the special ingredient is orange.!! I will be sharing my recipe along with the other members recipes. Stay tuned in for that fun post. :) If you are thinking to make some recipes with orange, then you must check out our post to come. Have a wonderful weekend and as always “KALI OREXI.”


Grandma Chrysoula’s Kourabiedes

Kouzounas Kitchen:

I absolutely loved my friend’s recipe and found her photos and especially her mom’s photos amazing! Kind of brought back some good memories of my yiayia, and I sure miss her. Thank you Athina for sharing and wonderful post. Please check out my friends kourabiedes recipe. Happy Holidays~

Originally posted on Kicking Back the Pebbles:


This is a post I’ve been meaning to share for ever. I’ve been blogging since 2012 and every year this season I’d think about it. Well, ladies and gents, I guess it was about time!! Since I have a lot of photos on my hands and I want to give a number of details in both Greek and in English I thought it would be neater to share everything in two different posts… otherwise you might have had to scroll to infinity!

So lets get down to the details! Kourabiedes, pronounced [kou-rub-ye-thes], is a light sugar/butter cookie, fluffy but crispy on the outside and on the inside. It is a traditional Christmas cookie but in some parts of Greece they’re also offered in weddings and christenings (since they’re sprinkled with powdered sugar, their white colour is associated to innocence & purity).

This recipe was passed down to my mother from…

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Mille-feuille a.k.a. Napoleon

Kouzounas Kitchen:

How about this lovely recipe by “HEYCAKES.” I am new to this food blog but I will tell you fab recipes. :)

Originally posted on Hey, cakes!:

Napoleon cake, a Russian version of classical French pastry Mille-feuille, is one of the most popular desserts in Russia and post-soviet countries like Latvia, where I come from. Inspired by my upcoming trip to Paris and using friend’s birthday as an excuse to bake on Friday evening, last week I decided to make this delicious creamy and light pastry.

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Kouzounas Kitchen Thanksgiving Menu

Well it’s almost here! That time where yes we stuff our faces full of yummy delicious Fall food. If you are being good and not stuffing your face, I give you an applause!! I can not miss stuffing, or mashed potatoes! Actually I don’t want to miss any of our yummy delicious food we will have at our Thanksgiving table. This year we are doing turkey day over at my sister and brother in laws house. Check this out my brother in law is making a smoked apple turkey with a thyme butter sauce!! Doesn’t that sound yummy?! Last year I shared our wonderful menu with you and this year I would like to do the same.

-Kouzounas Kitchen Thanksgiving Menu-



***Yes I had to use my friends chalkboard sign as I am practicing for Sundays farmer markets. I like to use my mini chalkboard signs to show what pastries I am selling. If you didn’t know already I am at the Land Park farmers market every Sunday. Come by and say hi and see the pastries I have to offer. Let’s get back to the yummy goodness!!


Spanakopita (Spinach Pie.)

This is a tradition that we have every Thanksgiving and Christmas.

(If you can try using puff pastry vs phyllo sometime I guarantee you will love it.)

Green Bean Casserole

Do Ahead Mashed Potatoes

(My grandmother makes a great do ahead recipe but I couldn’t seem to find her recipe so I found one that was close enough.)

Cranberry Sauce
You can get creative with cranberry sauce by adding in some roasted walnuts or pecans over the top of your sauce to add some flavor or adding a splash of orange juice to your sauce.  I included a yummy cranberry walnut relish below.

Flavorful Stuffing

( I like to add celery, apple, raisins and 1/4 cup of white wine.)

Smoked Apple Turkey With Thyme Butter Sauce
(I do not have my brother in laws recipe but I will try to get it tomorrow.) I did include a recipe below.)


Pumpkin Crumble Pie

(Instead of pecans I used almonds because I only had almonds in the house.)

Whole Grain Gingersnap Cookies


IMG_3072.JPGFrom my family to yours HAPPY THANKSGIVING!!! :)