How Queen Elizabeth Drinks Her Tea

·2 min read


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Queen Elizabeth requires her tea to be boiling hot.

Former royal chef Darren McGrady, who served as personal chef to Queen Elizabeth and other members of the royal family for 15 years, recently revealed the British monarch's beverage preferences.

"Hot tea has to be hot," McGrady told Coffee Friend. "Tea has to be absolute boiling water poured over the top of it, it has to steep for five minutes, that is the most important part. It’s really, really important when making tea is that it’s made in a teapot—that is a real cup of tea."

McGrady also shared that the Queen's favorite meal is "probably" afternoon tea.

"The Queen had afternoon tea every day, wherever she was in the world. If we were at Buckingham Palace and she was on her own for tea, or whether she had Prince William come and join her, or whether she had a garden party for 6000 people or even if she was on the Royal Britannia in Australia," he recalled. "The Queen loved afternoon tea, I would say it’s probably one of her favourite meals. Certainly when I was there, she would sit down religiously for tea."

McGrady also went on to share the menu for Queen Elizabeth's daily afternoon tea: there were always two types of sandwiches, scones, a small cake, and Earl Grey tea. The chefs at Buckingham Palace always made sure that she wasn't getting the same scones she had the day before, and the small cakes also changed day to day.

"One day they would be plain scones, the next day they would be fruit scones with raisins. It was really important the way they alternated," McGrady remembers. "So much so, that the chefs at Buckingham Palace would ring Windsor Castle on a Monday morning and ask what flavour scones the Queen had the day before, just to be sure we didn’t serve the same. I’m not sure what would have happened if we did, but we always checked."

Want to plan your own royal-inspird tea? McGrady, who was also chef to Princess Diana and Princes William and Harry, has published two cookbooks—Eating Royally and The Royal Chef at Home: Easy Seasonal Entertainingfilled with favorite recipes.


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