British Royal Dining... the Tidbits and Odd Facts
So maybe you'd like to dine like the royal family? Or possibly attend a dinner at one of their many palaces? Maybe you dine royally while day dreaming.
If by chance there is ever an opportunity for you to go to dinner with HRH at the palace, here are a few things you may find interesting... The silver service (aka "The Grand Service") is so large, and so complete with every type of utensil imaginable, it takes eight (yes... eight) palace employees at least three weeks to get ready for setting on the tables. Though the Grand Service is kept by the Yeoman of the Silver Pantry (that is the actual title) in a controlled atmosphere, each piece still needs to be washed, shined and polished to perfection prior to a State Dinner.
Don't think about asking the Queen to "Please pass the salt." She has her own salt dip, or salt cellar, and it is not part of the 2,000 plus silver pieces used for a State Dinner. The Queen's is a salt dip that was made by Nicholas Clausen in 1721.
|Page from a the book,"For the Royal Table: Dining at the Palace"|
All of this comes from a wonderful book entitled "For the Royal Table: Dining at the Palace" and was created by "The Royal Collection" in Great Britain. It includes historic menus, royal traditions, the silver, the crystal, the china... everything the royal family has used for the past 500 years.
From the Royal Collection website, in 2008 announcing the publication of the book there is this..."The style of dining has changed considerably over the centuries, as can been seen from the elaborate menus and recipes from past royal banquets. At a lavish dinner given by Charles II for the Garter Knights at Windsor Castle in 1671, guests were served 145 dishes during the first course, and the catering included 16 barrels of oysters, 2,150 poultry, 1,500 crayfish, 6,000 asparagus stalks and 22 gallons of strawberries." and much more.
|The book shows the finger bowls set out for the dessert or fruit course.|
|Menu for the Wedding Breakfast of King George VI and Queen Elizabeth in 1923|
|The table gets white glove treatment.|