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The Museum of Tula Gingerbread

The Museum of Tula Gingerbread

In Tula there is a unique museum of Tula Gin - gerbread. Here it is possible to see ancient ginger - bread boards and the gingerbreads made on them, hear about ancient traditions and ceremonies, and also try newly-baked gingerbreads with tea. The sweet, beautiful souvenir from Tula – a brand of na - tional scale – disperses in all corners of our country and abroad. The gingerbread craft goes back in the depth of centuries. The first mention of the Tula gin - gerbread can be found in the land records of 1685. It doesn’t mean that this delicacy appeared then. The word gingerbread is related to the word spice among which sweet Indian pepper occupies the first place.

The ancient word was pronounced as pernik. Our Tula gingerbread is one of the most ancient the most known in Russia though gingerbreads baked in other Russian cities. In old times the Tula gingerbread was only honey. Honey was sweetness, fragrance and a natural preservative. Now gingerbread is made with addition of sugar and honey.

 It is considered that printing gingerbread was created in Tula as the town was famous for woodcarvers. In old times people spoke: “Beds for guns were made of wood too “. Thanks to forms it was possible to print so many gingerbreads, as it was necessary. Drawings were different: patterns, symbols, images of the Tula Kremlin, names, congratulations, anniversaries and holidays.

Gingerbread has special compounding and manufacturing techniques. Recipes were kept in a family in a strict secret and descended from the father to the son. Now the technology is known thanks to the Tula gingerbread-maker Anna Matveevna Pavlova and Stepan Dmitriyevich Sevastyanov who was the thirteen-year-old teenager in 1903 and worked for the well-known owner of a gingerbread factory Vasily Romanovich Grechikhin.

Now in Tula gingerbreads are baked both on ancient and newly developed recipes. They are of various forms and weights, including the gift – sixteen-kilogram gingerbread. In a remarkable collection of the exhibits belonging to the founder of gingerbread factory Vasily Evlampiyevich Serikov, presented in the museum “Tula Gingerbread”, there are documents, historic facts, gingerbreads from the smallest size – the size of a fivekopeck coin – to gingerbread weighing 50 kilograms. The exposition is called “History of the Russian State in gingerbreads”.

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