Today’s post is all about Slovenia Exploring: Markets and Food as Slovenia does markets oh so well! I thought I would share some of my highlights from both Ljubljana and Bled so fellow vegetarians are able to find places to eat as well!
I arrived in Ljubljana on a Friday afternoon and quickly discovered that there was an evening street food market happening in the centre of town so headed down to check it all out. It was a beautiful sunny evening and the market was busy but not overwhelming so I went for a wander to see what was on offer. There were food stalls from all around the world, many of which had vegetarian options clearly marked, as well as wine, beer, coffee and gin stalls.
People were perched all around the square happily chatting and eating away so I picked a few stalls and started ordering! I started with some traditional Slovenian dumplings (known as zukrofi) in an asparagus sauce which were very tasty and perked me right up after what had been a bit of an arduous day of travel.
I had a gin cocktail then followed it up with a kind-of spring roll which was served with a pumpkin sauce and was equally delicious. Most of the food was around the €4-5 mark which was great as it meant I could try and few things! It was an excellent way to kick off my time in Slovenia and I had a feeling straight away that I was going to love this country!
Ljubljana has a large central market square which hosts a fresh-food market pretty much every day, with Saturday the biggest of all, so I headed down to check that out the next morning as well. It was full of stalls selling fresh fruits and veggies, as well as breads, cheese, meats and more.
There is also a smaller indoor section that has deli goods, preserves, fish and the like which is also open most days. I wandered through the market for ages before picking up some fresh bread, cheese, cherries and strawberries to take with me for a picnic lunch which was pretty perfect. I love cities that prioritise fresh produce, and being able to pick up locally grown products was pretty special. They even have vending machines in the square that sell locally made dairy products, including fresh milk, which was definitely not something I had seen before!
I mentioned in my first post on Ljubljana how the river bank is lined with cafes, bars and restaurants so I often just wandered along when I was getting hungry and popped into wherever took my fancy. It was a pretty excellent spot to stop for a cocktail, beer or a feed and do some people watching while I was at it!
Some places were better than others for vegetarians, particularly as beef is a big fixture on the menu, and I seemed to find myself ordering burgers rather often as that seemed to be the most common vegetarian option, but thankfully they all tended to be pretty different and generally delicious!
The local beer wasn’t too shabby either, so I tried out a few of those over the week as well!
Layered cakes were another feature of the menu across Ljubljana so I made sure to sample a few of those as well (thankfully I was doing a lot of walking!).
One of the nicest meals I had in Ljubljana was at a little, traditional style restaurant in the heart of the old part of town called Julija. It was a lovely spot and even with the white tablecloths and excellent service the food was still very reasonably priced.
I decided to try out a Slovenian style pasta which was served with local, seasonal vegetables and light, creamy sauce which was absolutely delicious. I was lucky to get a table as I hadn’t made a booking, so I’d recommend making a reservation if you want to eat there!
Despite Bled being a smallish town there were still plenty of excellent places to eat as a vegetarian, and everything was really reasonably priced as well! One of the best meals I had was at a place called Okarina (another place I’d recommend you booking!) that had a decent vegetarian section of the menu, and served traditional Slovenian food as well as Indian style dishes. I stuck to the Slovenian part of the menu and ordered a baked veggie dish full of local produce which was absolutely delicious.
Another night I visited a vegan burger joint called Zaziv which had an excellent array of burger options and allowed you to choose the type of bread, sauce and salad that went with your patty of preference. It was a messy but delicious meal and it was pretty great to find a little place selling all vegan options in the middle of Bled!
One food that Bled was famous for was the Bled Cream Cake which was kind of like a vanilla slice but with an added layer thrown into the mix. It was sold all over Bled so decided I needed to try at least a couple of them to see what the difference was!
They were incredibly delicious and provided an excellent post-hike fuel for me as well! Out of the two I tried I think the more rustic version I got at a little cafe overlooking the lake, although the one at the Park Restaurant (who claim to have invented the cake) was pretty excellent as well!
Overall I had a pretty delicious week of eating in Slovenia, particularly thanks to the amazing markets! It’s definitely a vegetarian friendly place to visit too!