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Kolokotes (Cypriot Squash Turnovers)

Kolokotes and Greek Coffee

In the Greek language there is only one word for pumpkins, squash or courgettes (zucchini) and the word is “kolokythi or kolokytha”.   Kolokotes, therefore are traditional Cypriot pastries, similar to calzone, empanadas, boureki or pies as we call them, made with squash and are neither sweat or salty.   They are vegan and perfect for Lent and can be eaten any time of the day.

These Cypriot turnovers are filled with squash or pumpkin, nuts, raisins and spices.

Perfect for breakfast or as a snack with a soda or as a snack in the evening with a glass of wine.    Any way you try them they are delicious.

kolokotes collage

 Kolokotes (Cypriot Squash Turnovers)


1 doze of phyllo dough, using all purpose flour

For filling:

  • 750 grams (1.65 lbs) butternut squash, cubed or grated
  • 1/3 cup carolina rice (or bulgur wheat)
  • 1/3 cup olive oil
  • 1/8 cup sugar
  • 1 tsp salt
  • Freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 tsp cinnamon
  • ½ cup fennel fronds, finely chopped
  • ½ cup almonds, skin on, coarsely pounded
  • 1/3 cup sultana raisins


  1. Prepare the dough.
  2. Peel the pumpkin and remove the seeds and threads preferably with a spoon and cut it into small cubes (about 1 cm) or shred them in your food processor.
  3. Place in a bowl and put the finely chopped fennel fronds and all the other ingredients i.e. the spices, rice (or bulgur wheat), sugar, olive oil, almonds and the raisins and mix them.
  4. Roll out your dough.
  5. Place a small plate of about 15 cm (6 inches) diameter on the phyllo and cut round circles. On one side place a spoonful of the filling and cover with the other half. Take both sides and turn up pressing with fingers so that they stick together, or press with a fork.
  6. Place them in an oiled baking tin or on parchment paper and brush them with olive oil or orange juice and bake them in a pre-heated oven at 180ο C / 350o F, for 30 minutes or until they have a nice golden colour.

This and many Cypriot recipes are included in my cookbook Mint, Cinnamon & Blossom Water, Flavours of Cyprus, Kopiaste as well as in my e-cookbook, sold on all Amazon stores.

A peek inside..

The recipe is included in my cookbook Mint, Cinnamon & Blossom Water, Flavours of Cyprus, Kopiasteas well as in Volume 2 of my e-cookbook, sold on all Amazon stores.


My second cookbook “More Than A Greek Salad” is also available on all Amazon stores.  For more information here.

Kopiaste and Kali Orexi,

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4 Responses

  1. Anonymous

    i never heard of using fennel or dill in it..but i may try:)

  2. Ivy

    Fennel gives it such a nice taste. However, if I can’t find fennel I use dill. Thanks for commenting. Happy New Year.

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  10. eva

    Hi Ivy! i want to make kolokotes but cant see your recipe here! please direct me! many thanks ! all the best! eva

  11. Very smart to draw an auidience with a cookbook to attain the recipe… these are a perfect example of heritages why you shouldnt give it away free… they are lovely and I am sure by the way they look they must taste fabulous… congrats on your cookbook and much luck in your success…. Claudia
    claudia recently posted..Grilled Citrus Scallop and Shrimp Skewers Vegetable MedleyMy Profile

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