I have lived in Slovenia for almost three summers now and was yet to visit the famous Odprta Kuhna (Slovenian for ‘Open Kitchen’) food market in the capital. It was my fourth visit to the city before I finally attended Odprta Kuhna and what an experience!
I’m definitely a big fan of food markets around the world and this one in particular is pretty cool as it’s a kinda high end market which shows off Slovenia’s emerging restaurant scene. To have a stall at this market, the vendor’s food has to provide a unique offering stopping direct competition between vendors and to make sure there is a diverse choice of cuisines from around the world.
After camping at the free camper stop just outside Ljubljana, Pete and I got the bus into the city and decided to build up our appetites by walking up to Ljubljana castle, something I hadn’t done before either. It was hot and sweaty but worth it for the views of the city. A few photos later and little rest in the shade, we made our way on foot to the Pogačarjev Trg square where Odprta Kuhna takes place.
We did two laps of the stalls making sure we saw all the vegetarian options for Pete and the vegan ones for me, we were hangry and we wanted to get the perfect lunch. We both decided on a burger from Barbarella which was the perfect choice as I don’t think I’ve had as good a vegan burger as when ate at Swing Kitchen in Vienna. The soy vegetable patty was really tasty and was topped with melted violife cheese, vegan coleslaw, sliced beef tomato and fresh salad. The black sesame bun was toasted too which I think makes a burger so much better. It was delicious and so filling that there sadly was no room for any vegan cheesecake they were selling…next time!
Picnic tables are set up for all the market goers and cold drinking water taps are nearby, perfect for refilling your water bottle. The food market has a lot of other vegan options from Veganika, Organic Garden, Perzijska kuhinja and Abi Falafel. If you’re making a day of it and you don’t have to drive then there are specialist gin, wine and beer stalls too that look so tempting on a sunny summer’s day.
Odprta Kuhna takes place every sunny Friday in March until October from 10:00 – 22:00. There is such a lovely atmosphere at this market, everyone is joined together by the love of food and it was great to see a lot of people choosing the vegan options.