We wouldn’t be surprised if people found themselves a dab hand at banana bread by now, after all that lockdown baking. Chances are you’ve found a foolproof recipe you can count on, but we bet it’s very different to the royal banana bread recipe that’s made for the queen.
The Queen’s former chef, Darren McGrady, has a YouTube channel where he regularly shares royal kitchen secrets from the time he spent cooking for the monarch, Prince Philip, Princess Diana and even a young Prince William and Prince Harry.
In his video titled ‘I always had Banana Bread in the fridge at the palace for emergencies’, Darren revealed the Queen was regularly served the treat during afternoon tea at Buckingham Palace, with ‘a little butter just splattered across the top’ of it.
The royal recipe combines the basic ingredients you would expect in a banana bread: self-raising flour, butter, salt, eggs, sugar and (of course) bananas. But its the extra additions to the recipe that make it different to what the rest of us might be used to.
Darren also added raisins, dried cherries and nuts to create texture in the cake, as well as vanilla bean paste for a boost of flavour. It was these extra ingredients that meant the banana bread could be stored safely for several months, so he always had some to hand when the Queen or other royals fancied it.
When the cake has fully cooled, the chef suggested wrapping it in plastic wrap and popping it in the fridge, where it will keep ‘fresh and moist and perfect’ for up to three months. Although, we’re not sure we could resist the temptation for that long.
Darren added: ‘I can’t tell you how many times this recipe got me out of trouble at Buckingham Palace. Because the fruit keeps the bread moist in the refrigerator for several weeks, there are always two or three loaves in there. If a member of the royal family turned up then, oh the good old banana bread – a life-saver!’
If the Queen’s fruit and nut banana bread doesn’t take your fancy, the royal pastry chefs have also previously shared recipes for cupcakes and a gingerbread house. Well, if they’re good enough for Her Majesty…