StreetSauce is a HotKarot & OpenSauce project that explores the possibilities of edible storytelling in encouraging socially inclusive human-food interactions. The project was initiated in 2014 as a collaboration with the NGO Homelike that provides social support to homeless women. Nine Homelike clients started cooking in our bistro, serving HotKarot with OpenSauces made from their personal life stories. By ordering the StreetSauce snack, bistro visitors have a unique chance to meet the chefs and tastethe possible flavors of a homeless life. Those who wish to share their own story in exchange can do so, by creating their personal sauce right on the spot. The bistro menu is varied: each person has a different story; each story has a different flavor. Since 2014, the StreetSauce bistro has been operated on a pop-up basis in various public venues across the Czech Republic, serving as a convivial space for people of diverse socioeconomic backgrounds to share food and stories. 

Similar as in other HotKarot & OpenSauce projects, the storytelling sauces are generated over the online OpenSauce cookbook that runs a network text analysis and translates the chefsstories (keywords) into sauce recipes (ingredients). Below are sauces made by chefs Eva and Ruzenka, other StreetSauces – such as those by Zuzka, Helca, and Jana are available in the cookbook.

Homelessness is an extreme form of social exclusion. Female homelessness presents a specially sensitive case, as it often remains hiddento the public eye. Many homeless women are not rough sleepers and stay in temporary shelters such as asylum houses. While male homelessness is sometimes seen as adventurous, women are typically seen as failing their expected roles of mothers and carers. This is also the case of the StreetSauce chefs, whose stories we aim to amplify through our edible storytelling design.


Eva is cooking her sauce. The recipe is based on her story, which she kindly shared with us in our studio.

As a design research project, StreetSauce explores the possibilities of speculative food design in encouraging socially inclusive interactions. The technological spectacularity of OpenSauce together with the sensorial appeal of food can attract audiences that might not be interested in homelessness issues otherwise. Broadly, the bistro probes the use of speculative design in everyday-life contexts, beyond the limited realm of art galleries and showrooms.


Dolejšová, M., Lišková, T. (2017). StreetSauce: Nurturing Speculation in Service Design. Interactions, 24 (5), 34-39. doi:10.1145/3121346 [pdf]

Dolejšová, M., Lišková, T., Obert, M. (2017). HotKarot & OpenSauce: Edible Storytelling & Design Speculations. Proceedings of the 3rd Biennal Conference on Research Through Design. [pdf]

Dolejšová, M., & Lišková, T. (2015). StreetSauce: Taste Interaction and Empathy with Homeless People. Proceedings of the 33rd Annual ACM Conference Extended Abstracts on Human Factors in Computing Systems, Seoul, Republic of Korea. [pdf]

Dolejšová, M. (2014). StreetSauce: Designing the Taste of Life. Talk at FoodCHI’14, Brisbane, Australia


StreetSauce at Spline Festival [Pilsen, CZ]

StreetSauce at Random Blends 2015 Inter [______]! exhibition, ArtScience Museum [Singapore]

StreetSauce at Brick & Chic Design Showcase [Prague, CZ)

StreetSauce at Festival of Performance, Ferdinand Baumann Gallery [Prague, CZ]

StreetSauce at HateFree Culture exhibition, DOX Gallery [Prague, CZ]

StreetSauce at Farmer’s Market Prague [CZ]

StreetSauce at Labour Exhibition, Gallery Cyprian Majernik [Bratislava, SK]

StreetSauce at Science Day [Prague, CZ]