ROMANOV FAMILY: HOW MANDARIN ORANGES BECAME RUSSIA’S NEW YEAR TREAT

ROMANOV FAMILY: HOW MANDARIN ORANGES BECAME RUSSIA’S NEW YEAR TREAT  

Grand Duke Peter of Olderburg, the first husband of Grand Duchess Olga Alexandrovna, sister of Tsar Nicholas II, was the Romanov family member who introduced mandarin oranges into Russia.
Grand Duke Peter of Oldenburg (right), the first husband of Grand Duchess Olga Alexandrovna, sister of Tsar Nicholas II, was the Romanov family member who introduced mandarin oranges into Russia.

New Year celebrations are arguably the most major holidays in modern Russia. One of the traditional treats on a Russian New Year’s table are mandarin oranges. This fruit was not native to Russia – it was introduced only a few years prior to the Russian revolution – by a member of the Romanov family Grand Duke Peter of Oldenburg, a great grandson of Tsar Nicholas I and first husband of Grand Duchess Olga Alexandrovna, sister of Tsar Nicholas II.

In 1912, the brother in law of Nicholas II  founded the first resort in Abkhazia: Gagry. There he began planting various foreign trees that thrived in a warm climate : eucalyptus, palm and tangerine trees. This experiment proved to be very successful. Within four years, the local newspaper wrote: “The experiment has confirmed that the whole of the Caucasus, the Black Sea coastal strip is quite suitable for cultivating mandarin oranges, lemons and oranges.”

Mandarins were considered a special treat, and hence became one of the staples on celebratory tables all over Russia – especially on New Year!

Facebooktwitterpinteresttumblrmail

Leave a comment

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.