Kate, Duchess of Cambridge, and Prince William married in their spectacular royal wedding ceremony in 2011. Although the ceremony was a state occasion for the nation, the Queen had given the couple permission to add their own special touches and loosen up the formal rules for their big day. Royal author Marcia Moody, in her 2013 book “Kate: A Biography”, reveals one of the ways in which the couple chose to break away from tradition.
Ms Moody writes: “The Queen hosted the formal art of the reception for 650 guests, which broke with tradition and was in the form of a buffet.”
Royal weddings have traditionally hosted a formal breakfast with a sit-down meal for distinguished guests, however Kate and William chose a more relaxed breakfast setting for dignitaries followed by an intimate dinner for friends and family.
This first formal reception was held in 19 state rooms in Buckingham Palace, and saw guests treated to a selection of 10,000 savoury and sweet canapés, before the bride and groom cut their stunning traditional tiered wedding cake.
Ms Moody reveals the carefully-selected menu consisted of canapés such as Cornish crab and lemon blini, and rhubarb creme brûlée tartlets, and focused on “organic food from the UK”.
She also refers back to a wedding-planning girls’ brunch Kate had enjoyed with Camilla, Duchess of Cornwall, and her daughter Laura Parker Bowles, where Camilla had humorously suggested sausages on sticks for the party food.
Ms Moody writes: “For those with simpler tastes there were also cheese straws and glazed chipolatas.
“Back when they had their girls’ lunch and Camilla suggested sausages on sticks, Kate was listening.”
The newlyweds’ more intimate wedding reception came later, where close friends and family enjoyed a meal and a second, chocolate wedding cake based on a “nursery favourite” of William’s, before music and dancing.
The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge’s more modern wedding style came in contrast to the formal wedding breakfasts the Royal Family have traditionally enjoyed.
Although Prince Edward and Sophie Rhys-Jones had chosen a buffet meal for their wedding reception in 1999, the Queen organised a sit-down service for herself, Prince Philip and the Queen Mother.
Prince Charles and Princess Diana’s reception in July 1981 featured a dish called Princess of Wales chicken, which was stuffed with a fine lamb mousse, and a five-foot tall wedding cake.
The Queen and Prince Philip’s celebration in November 1947 also saw dishes named for the newly-married couple.
Their guests enjoyed “Filet de Sole Mountbatten”, followed by a French casserole, before a dessert of “Bombe Glacée Princesse Elizabeth”, an ice-cream dish with strawberries.
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