How do you follow up a wedding ceremony as glamorous and magical as Prince Harry and Meghan Markle's? With a lunchtime reception fit for the queen, of course!
After the happy couple recited their vows at St. George's Chapel at Windsor Castle on Saturday, May 19, they and their 600 guests made their way to St. George's Hall for a meal hosted by Her Majesty the Queen. If you've ever wondered what, exactly, would be on the menu for such a momentous occasion, we've got you covered. And we're warning you now, this will more than likely make you really hungry.
During the reception, guests had their choice from a selection of canapés, including Scottish Langoustines wrapped in smoked salmon with cirtus creme fraiche, grilled English asparagus wrapped in Cumbrian ham, garden pea panna cotta with quail eggs and lemon verbena, heritage tomato and basil tartare with balsamic pearls, poached free-range chicken bound in a lightly spiced yogurt with roasted apricot, croquette of confit Windsor lamb with roasted vegetables and shallot jam, and warm asparagus spears with mozzarella and sun-blush tomatoes.
Guests were also served a selection of bowl food, which is a fun way of saying canapés served in miniature bowls, including fricassee of free range chicken with morel mushrooms and young leeks, pea and mint risotto with pea shoots, truffle oil and Parmesan chips, and ten-hour slow roasted Windsor pork belly with apple compote and crackling.
Of course, no wedding reception worth is salt would be complete without a little something to satisfy the sweet tooth. Guests were served sweet canapés including champagne and pistachio macaroons, orange crème brûlée tartlets, and miniature rhubarb crumble tartlets. And then, of course, there's the stunning wedding cake designed by Claire Ptak. Featuring elderflower syrup made at The Queen's resident in Sandringham from the estate's own elderflower trees, the cake was made of a light sponge cake uniquely formulated for the couple. A filling made from Amalfi lemon curd and elderflower buttercream tied it all together, as did the decoration of Swiss meringue buttercream and 150 fresh flowers, mainly British and in season, including peonies and roses.
When guests were looking for something to sip on, they were served Pol Roger Brut Reserve Non Vintage Champagne and a selection of wines. A range of soft drinks were also served, including an apple and elderflower mocktail, made with the same elderflower syrup that was used in the wedding cake and Sandringham Cox's apple juice.
All told, approximately 7,500 items of food have been prepared by a team of 25 chefs led by Royal Chef Mark Flanagan, the Palace announced. All ingredients were carefully sourced from Royal Warrant holding companies, utilizing as many UK-based ingredients as possible.