Zagreb, Croatia

I spent the last few months traveling from London to Beijing. Here is a taste of one place we spent time. Follow the links to read about others.

November 4th- 7th, 2005

John and I visited Zagreb, Croatia after spending some time in Rome, Italy.  While in Zagreb we visited a huge indoor/outdoor market in the center to have yet another inexpensive and satisfying picnic.  We bought bread from Pan-Pek, a nice and hearty semolina loaf that had a lovely golden brown color. 


It was perhaps not the freshest, as the crumb and crust were a bit dry, but we did visit late in the day.  Overall, the quality of the bread was nothing to write home about. We also bought two white farmer’s cheeses from a stand.  The first was of a hard texture with a very salty taste and a strong, pungent smell.  It was very good, but perhaps a bit too salty for us. 

The second was a gorgeous soft cheese with a subtle tangy flavor and a smooth, cool texture.  It went well with the bread.

We stayed with two lovely girls, Mia and Danicza.  I will forever be indebted to them for introducing me to ajvar, a spread of sweet red pepper, eggplant, garlic, and spices (with origins in Serbia according to Wikipedia).  I am completely addicted to the stuff now but have yet to find any as good as the one they had me taste.  They kept us out late and showed us a great time.  I wish we had had more time to spend in their city.  Thanks!

After a brief stay in Varaždin, Croatia we made our way to Liszó, Hungary.

show hide 10 comments

Pille - I love ajvar, too. I first got to try it in 1998 in Bosnia&Herzegovina. I even got a recipe from my host for making it myself – once I get hold of 10 kg of fresh and aromatic peppers they sell in the area:)
Luckily there are few shops in Edinburgh that stock ajvar and it’s not too bad actually.

gemma - Ooh, even though I have no access to the 10 kg of local peppers that you mention, I would love to take a gander at the recipe if you ever have a minute to send it my way.
I will definitely be on the ajvar hunt when I get back to Chicago.

Rjecnik - you have some awesome pics here. i hope the baked goods are as good as they look on your blog.

t. - ajvar is great. next time you visit zagreb, leave me a message on my blog

engleski rjecnik - here is my cheer to ajvar. i saw that trader joe’s carries it nowdays. great.

gemma - Hi e.r.,
I too have been pleased to find ajvar around Chicago. It seems like several establishments have picked it up in the last few years. I’m quite glad.

Jen - Rich’s ftw!

gemma - Yes! (And Ann’s Bakery right up Leavitt, too)

A.P. - I am serbian myself and grew up eating the stuff, my favorite brand of ajvar that we buy in the chicago area is “Biljana Makedonski Ajver Hot”. Its perfect and you will probably find it in some world markets.

Gemma - Thanks for the suggestion A.P. I usually shop at Ann’s Bakery in West Town for Ajver (it’s near my work). I’ll keep an eye out for the brand you mention. Any favorite shops to suggest?

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