With just days to go until Prince Harry and Meghan Markle’s big day, the final plans are coming together. The latest detail to be revealed hints at the menu for the wedding reception, when guests will attend an afternoon celebration in St George’s Hall.
In a break with tradition, the couple have chosen not to hold a sit-down wedding breakfast on 19 May. Instead, canapés and bowl food that can be eaten while standing up will be served to the 600 guests, The Press Association reports.
The kitchen staff at Windsor Castle are expected to create a mix of sweet and savoury snacks using fresh ingredients from the Crown Estate. The canapés have been designed to be eaten in two bites, while the bowl meals are likely to be easy-to-eat options that please a crowd. Although the event will be hosted by the Queen, it’s the newlyweds who have had the final say on the menu for the day. According to the Royal Family’s website, both Harry and Markle trialled the dishes in the castle’s kitchen back in March.
Details of the menu are yet to be confirmed by Kensington Palace, but the Royal Household’s head chef has made one thing clear – the food will be made with "the freshest produce available".
"Luckily the seasons have just fallen perfectly and that's become the main focus in the decision making of the menus," said Mark Flanagan. He added that much of the produce used in the dishes – like asparagus and peas which are in season and have been pictured in the castle's kitchens - will be delivered from farms across counties like Kent and Norfolk as well as the Queen’s estate in Windsor.
When it comes to sweet treats, the royal website also suggests that chocolate truffles - a favourite at Windsor Castle receptions - will be served as dessert. At a recent event for the Windsor Horse show, crème brûlée, biscuits with mango panna cotta topping and yellow macaroons featured on the spring-inspired menu.
With the equestrian competition now over, preparations for the wedding reception are already under way with 30 members of staff set to be working on Saturday. "All the staff are delighted to be involved on the day," Flanagan added. "We've even had old staff contacting us if we need some extra support."
Once the first reception has finished, there will be another menu to serve. A wedding dinner for 200 guests is being held at Frogmore House by the Prince of Wales on Saturday evening. It’s thought that different caterers will be in charge of the food at this private event.