Like many countries in Eastern Europe, the food in Slovenia is hearty, homely and many of the most popular dishes have evolved from making ingredients go a long way during tough times. Although there will be plenty of chances to enjoy international cuisine on a Ljubljana city break, it’s definitely worth trying some of these local delights during your trip.
Idrija is a town in the west of Slovenia and Žlikrofi are little dumplings that first originated there. Clearly influenced by Italian ravioli, these pasta pockets are usually filled with potatoes, onions and a range of spices that include marjoram. Often they are accompanied by meat and a vegetable sauce but they are also just as delicious on their own.
Another dish that is influenced by a neighbouring country, Bograč is the Slovenian version of Hungarian goulash. Traditionalists still use cast iron cauldrons to cook this national dish, mixing four different kinds of meat with spices, onions, potatoes and red peppers. It was first eaten in the Prekmurje region, where they take their Bograč very seriously. Every year, in the town of Lendava, chefs from around Slovenia, Hungary, Croatia and Austria compete at Bogračfest to be crowned the world’s best.
Another regional dish that has become a national staple is gibanica layered cake from Prekmurje. This sweet treat has everything you want from a dessert, combining the flavours of a cheesecake, apple pie and walnut cake with the subtle hint of poppy seeds that you so often get in Eastern European puddings. Between layers of pastry, you will find walnuts, poppy seeds, ricotta, apples, raisins and cottage cheese.
The Karst region is situated on Slovenia’s only coastline, at the Gulf of Trieste, and is characterised by large limestone rocks. This is where the best prosciutto ham in the country is made, so much so that it was given Protected Geographical Indication by the European Commission in 2012. Dried by the strong Bora winds and left to mature for up to 16 months, an age old production method means that only salt is added to create the intense flavour. The Pršut is usually eaten tapas-style with cheese, olives and wine.
Taking a leaf out of the German cookbook, Slovenia has its own national sausage. The recipe for Kranjska klobasa dates back to 1912 and it has been designated as a protected Slovenian product. The Carniolan sausage, as it is known in English, is made from pork and also includes bacon, salt, a hint of garlic and some black pepper. They are typically served with sauerkraut or in a crusty roll with mustard or ketchup on top.
If these Slovenian delicacies have got your mouth watering for a Ljubljana city break or a trip to Lake Bled, we can tailor-make your ideal holiday. Call us on 0800 988 3369 for more information.