Toruń is not only popular for it being the home of Mikołaj Kopernik (Nicholus Copernicus) but also for gingerbread, which has been made in this city since the Medieval Times!
Well developed bee-keeping, a fertile soil, which let to cultivate wheat, and a trade route leading through this area, made this happen. For centuries, bakers from other cities tried to obtain the same taste of gingerbread as they do it in Toruń, but they never succeeded!
There is a nice legend about how the gingerbread was invented: it was the baker’s daughter, Katarzynka, who was preparing a feast to honor the king coming to Toruń. The bees told her secretly to add honey to the bread and cakes. The pastries were excellent and the king made Torun’s gingerbread famous throughout his whole kingdom. And nowadays in Toruń, they make gingerbread cakes called Katarzynki.
There is also a gingerbread museum in Toruń. A 16th century bakery is reconstructed and visitors participate in production, according to traditional recipes and using the same tools that were used 500 years ago. You can create your own gingerbread and take it as a souvenir!
Watch a video from the museum showing the gingerbread baking on YouTube.