The Queen’s former chef reveals secrets of Her Majesty’s Easter – from her favourite gin drink to the dogs’ special menu


THE Queen and Prince Phillip have had to spend the Easter long weekend alone at Windsor Castle this year as the lockdown meant her family couldn’t join them for the annual celebration. 

But despite the Royal family not being able to come together, former royal chef Darren McGrady says the restrictions won’t put a stop to the Monarch’s normal celebrations.

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The Queen’s former chef reveals exactly what the Royal family Easter lunch normally looks like

Each year, the Queen invites her loved ones to the castle for the weekend where they spend quality time together attending Easter Sunday mass and enjoy a traditional  lunch which is thoughtfully prepared by an entire kitchen staff.

Darren, who worked as the Royal chef for fifteen years, claims it’s unlikely the Queen would go without her regular Gin and Dubonnet and that the Monarch and her husband Prince Philip will still sit down for Easter lunch – although much quieter than normal.

He told OK! magazine that he didn’t think the big kitchen will be open this year, and that there’ll be minimal staff on duty so they’ll use the small kitchen instead.

He said: “Even though she’s self-isolating, she’s at her happy place and she can go for walks in Home Park unbothered by her protection officers.

“Although it’ll be pretty much the two of them eating together, they won’t have TV dinners on lap trays. They’ll still be served at the table as always.”

The Queen normally invites the rest of her family to spend the weekend at Windsor Castle to enjoy Easter

Daren shared exactly what the Queen and her relatives like to eat over Easter and it seems the Royal family are just like anyone else when it comes to enjoying a traditional fish dinner on Good Friday.

On Sunday, however, the entire family sit down for a four-course roast dinner after church.

Darren says: “We’d go straight into the main course – a traditional roast lamb with seasonal vegetables. The Queen likes her meat well done so she’d always have the first two slices.”

He revealed that the roast is served alongside a compound salad served in a kidney dish attached to the plate – just some lettuce and cucumber with a little mint or some grated carrot and coriander.”

Darren McGrady worked for the Queen for fifteen years

The Royals also enjoy having cheese with their lunch with the Queen’s preference being the fresh Windsor Cheese made specially at the Windsor Dairy.

Darren claimed that the family like to eat seasonal food, and that the Monarch would “put a really thick line through the menu” if she didn’t think something was right for the time of year.

He said:  “The most incredible sweet white Windsor peaches grew on the estate too in my day. We’d have to lock them away in the kitchens because everyone wanted to taste them. The Queen always looked forward to those but she’d have to wait until they were in season.”

But just like everyone else, the Royal family love their fair share of chocolate on Easter.

According to Darren, the 93-year-old Monarch gives it up every year for lent so likes to indulge on Easter Sunday.

But not just any chocolate it seems, as the chefs at Windsor make their own Easter eggs.

The adult’s eggs are beautifully decorated with sugared flowers and the children’s feature fun designs.

For the Queen, though, Bendicks Bittermints are her favourites and is particularly fond of dark chocolate.

The Queen, along with her family, always attend mass on Easter Sunday

Before lunch, the family come together for drinks, however, the Queen normally refrains from drinking until the evening where she’ll enjoy her “habitaual Gin and Dubonnet”, Darren says.

He also said she would have her favourite German wine, called Gewurztraminer, which is quite light and sweet, adding that “Prince Philip doesn’t really drink wine – he’d rather have a bottle of beer.”

You’d be foolish to think The Queen’s dogs would go without on Easter Sunday and they do join in on the annual celebrations.

While her dogs normally enjoy budget dog food from Tesco, on Easter, Darren said they used to have their own menus in his time working for the Queen.

He said:”Back then they had their own menus – one day it would be chicken, the next beef.

“Two footmen would take them their food. We called them Dog Boy 1 and Dog Boy 2.”

They’re also allowed to sit at the Queen’s feet during lunch on Easter

In other royal news, the Queen is planning a ‘sweet surprise’ for Charlotte and Louis’s birthdays while in lockdown.

And William and Kate hire Harry and Meghan’s social media guru who helped them ‘conquer the world’ via Instagram.

Plus the Duchess of Sussex’s facialist Sarah Chapman has shared a good luck message following Megxit.