Sunday, 29 May 2022

Mary Berry was surprise inspiration behind Prince Louis’ first words

Mary Berry calls Cambridges a 'modern couple with tradition'

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The Queen of baking, Mary Berry, will chair a one-off BBC special in celebration of Queen Elizabeth’s Platinum Jubilee tonight. ‘The Jubilee Pudding: 70 Years in the Baking’ will see five home baking hopefuls attempting to make the “perfect platinum pudding”. Judging the competition is Buckingham Palace head chef, Mark Flanagan, who will be joined by previous Great British Bake Off winner, Dr. Rahul Mandal, MasterChef judge Monica Galetti, as well as Fortnum & Mason executive pastry chef, Roger Pizey.

Mary was keen to be involved in the competition, which is in partnership with Fortnum & Mason, saying: “I thought it sounded like a simply wonderful idea. 

“Jubilees are very special, people are going to have street parties and come together for the occasion as families and communities.   

“It’s a wonderful thought that perhaps this Jubilee pudding will be made for everyone celebrating whether at street parties, for family occasions, or even made for just two people. 

“The Jubilee weekend will feel as though the country is united.”

Last year, Mary was made a Dame Commander for her services to cooking, writing and baking as she was honoured by Prince Charles during an investiture ceremony at Windsor Castle.

The former Bake Off presenter has been given an equally great honour from one of the family’s youngest royals. 

According to Kate, Duchess of Cambridge, ‘Mary’ was one of Prince Louis’ first words.

She revealed that her youngest son, who was 19-months-old at the time,  was “fascinated by faces” and would say “that’s Mary Berry” when he saw her on cookbooks in the family’s kitchen.

During A Berry Royal Christmas, a 2019 BBC Christmas special, the Duchess told the cook: “One of Louis’ first words was Mary, because right at his height are all my cooking books in the kitchen bookshelf.

“And children are really fascinated by faces, and your faces are all over your cooking books and he would say: ‘That’s Mary Berry’… so he would definitely recognise you if he saw you today.”

Kate also gave insight into family life at Kensington Palace and her children’s favourite foods, and said: “One of the last things we cooked at home was your pizza dough. 

“Louis loves beetroots, and [Princess] Charlotte, obviously, loves Charlotte potatoes.”

Later in the programme, in honour of the young prince, Mary cooked a recipe for chocolate cake with grated beets.  

Before trying her creation, she said: “I want Louis to like it because he loves beetroot.

“That is what I call a truly indulgent, decadent chocolate cake, and it’s the beetroot that makes it so rich.”

Contestants in ‘The Jubilee Pudding: 70 Years in the Baking’ will have to make an equally delicious cake to impress the judges.

Fortnum & Mason have set out judging criteria that will be used to find the treat fit for the Queen.

According to their website it can only be a sweet cake – not savoury.

The rules read: “Your recipe submission should be sweet. If in doubt, just imagine your recipe being served for afternoon tea or after the main course.”

The winning dish needs to be easy enough for people at home to recreate; therefore, the judging panel will be looking for ingredients and kitchen equipment readily available to people all over the world.

A memorable or sentimental story behind the pudding could be a winning factor; some recipes may be inspired by the 96-year-old monarch’s life, handed down from generation to generation or part of a special family memory.

And while the “proof of the pudding may be in the eating,” it also needs to look the part, as the winning dish will be served to the Queen herself. 

Camilla, Duchess of Cornwall will announce the winner, and the winning recipe will be gifted to the Queen and the public.

Fortnum & Mason said: “With delicious food being at the heart of these historic celebrations, we’re hoping the star of all street parties this year will be the winning Platinum Pudding.”

You can watch The Jubilee Pudding: 70 Years in the Baking on BBC one and iPlayer on Thursday 12th May 2022 at 8pm.

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