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Greek Bakery

Hi all,
I'm trying to help out my parents in this hunt for a greek bread!
My parents went to Greece in the summer to visit friends.
There is a particular type of bread that they ate, usually for breakfast.
I may have the spelling wrong, but it is something like "koloraea".
My parents described it to me as having a sort of hard texture. It is not a cookie!

We even drove down to the Danforth and went found a greek bakery.
They pointed us out to something they had when we asked for the koloraea.
We ended up buying a dozen, but it wasn't what my parents were looking for.

I'd appreciate any recommendations, thanks!!

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  1. I'm not positive, but is what you're trying to describe a baguette-type product? I've never heard of the word you're describing it as, but I do know that a Greek type baguette, usually round, white bread with sesame seeds on top is called a "kouloura" pronounced koo-loora.
    But what threw me off was that you said it was sort of hard. The only other thing I can think of is "paximathi" pronounced PA-xi-MA-THEE, which is kind of like a Greek biscotti-bread. Here's a link to an example: http://www.greekproducts.com/paximadi...

    The bakeries on the Danforth should have it, if not, try Kostas Meats on Ellesmere and Warden. He's pretty good.

    Good luck!

    1. I think what you mentioned at first, the kouloura, is probably what i'm looking for. My mom DID mention to me that it was round, king of like a bagel shape but without a hole?

      I'll check out Kostas Meats sometime since that's sort of closer to me uptown.
      Thanks Raquel!

      1. Not sure where you can get kouloura bread, but Serano Bakery, 830 Pape, between Danforth and Mortimer, is the place of choice for a lot of Toronto Greeks. You can always give them a call at 416-462-2735.

        5 Replies
        1. re: estragon

          Um. No its not. Serrano's is a fine bakery but, not a destination point as you have described.

          1. re: to_frankie

            OK. Then what IS the "destination" bakery for Greeks in Toronto? There doesn't seem to be anything here that's similar to Afroditi in Montreal.

            1. re: estragon

              Donlands is one that comes to mind more so than Serrano's.

          2. re: estragon

            Yes, it is a great place! The bread requested I actually bought today and it is oh so good with the hard crust harder and more flavourful than Italian or Portuguese breads. Certainly it is a destination for me with all it's fine products, even specialty grocery, and at Serano Bakery, this out-of-towner almost always gets parking fairly easily in the small plaza lot!

            1. re: estragon

              I would agree that Serano's is the favourite bakery for many Greeks in Toronto. About 500 Greeks were served Serano pastries last night at the annual Ahepa Christmas party at the Metropolitan Centre. The Serano pastries were actually the best part of the meal.

            2. Was it soft inside? Santorini's in Thornhill serves a large round loaf that has a hard crust but is soft inside. It reminds me of Portuguese cornbread.

              1. kouloura/ koulouri is the bread that you are describing. it is a ring that is hard with sesame seeds. its yummy and is sold in bakeries and on street coirners all over greece. while i know its not what you are looking for, tsoureki is even yummier.a fluffy bread that is a little sweet. toasted with butter it is heaven...

                you can go to www.artopolis.net and order.

                1. Thanks for all the responses!!

                  It does seems like I am looking for kouloura bread.
                  I forgot to mention that my mom said it wasn't sweet at all.

                  I will check out Serano Bakery next time I make a trip downtown and look for the kouloura and tsoureki :) thanks!!

                  1. I would just go to Donlands bakery.....Serano is OK but Donlands is better.......and please if you want proper Greek food I beg you not to go to Santorini's in Thonhill - it's horrid.........

                    5 Replies
                    1. re: soula12

                      Ditto....Santorini was not the great experience for good greek food.

                      As for tsoureki...it is an Easter bread and would be hard to find this time of the year...

                      What would help is if you told us what part of Greece your family went to. The northerners and the southners each call it the same but make it different.

                      1. re: capularis

                        They were mainly in Athens.... I guess that would be southern?

                        I googled kouloura and found a few recipes. It doesn't seem too hard so I might try it out :D

                        1. re: capularis

                          artopolis and a few other bakeries in ny actually produce tsoureki all year long because it has proved to be so popular!

                        2. re: soula12

                          I agree - went to Serano recently after I read about it here, and I found it just OK, (maybe it was an off day?). I too prefer Donlands bakery (which is actually on Pape), as well as Select (on Donlands!).

                          1. re: Crepes Suzette

                            I disagree about Select. Lovely place; blah tasting pastries.

                        3. I just wanted to say thanks for all the responses!
                          I didn't realize that I would find the bakeries on Pape rather than on Danforth, where I originally thought I would find them.

                          I did end up driving through the area last Thursday.
                          I was coming up from downtown so the first bakery I passed was Serano's. I stopped there and they said they sold out of it already (it was 2pm), but there was a pre-packaged one in the store so i bought that.

                          Then I drove further up and saw another small Greek bakery. I can't remember the name, but it's right beside a Danish bakery.
                          They had fresh-made kouloura there so I bought some.
                          I drove further up the street and saw Donlands bakery, but I didn't stop there because I already had a lot of kouloura by then! But now that I think about it, I should have just to see what they have.

                          To end the story, I gave them to my parents and while they enjoyed it, it still wasn't what they were looking for.
                          Both of the ones I bought were of a raisin cinnamon-y flavor (the only kinds they had at least at the time or maybe always?). The ones my parents had in Greece were plain. Sometimes it was with cheese. Will keep looking!

                          1 Reply
                          1. re: sumashi

                            I think that what your parents had is really only made in family homes these days. You'll need to get a family recipe as I don't believe any balery(or perhaps the odd one) would carry what you're looking for. I would still pop by Donlands or else I would search the internet for a recipe. Otherwise, I would ask someone at Donlands for a recipe. I only figured out exactly what you were referring to when you said that they were with cheese. They're eaten as appetizers - sort of like tiropita.

                          2. What about Athen's Pastries on Danforth? Just heard about them for the first time today?

                            3 Replies
                            1. re: BLM

                              Athens is very good, but also very specialized. They make about 6 kinds of filo pies (both savoury and sweet) and a couple of other sweets, but nothing else.

                              1. re: embee

                                Are they the best in Toronto, in what they do? Comparable to the best Greek bakeries in Montreal(I don't even know what's the best Greek bakery in Montreal, to be honest)?

                                1. re: BLM

                                  I can't answer that. Their style is different from other Greek bakeries I've tried. I'm told it is authentic, and they make their own filo. These are large square pies with a thick layer of filling, which they cut into bite size pieces. The bougatsa, in particular, is delicious. I don't know anything about Greek baking in Montreal.