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Wednesday, 22 October 2014

Windermere chef’s crowning glory to meet royal approval

HE may have trained under renowned TV cookery star Raymond Blanc and be the head chef in a demanding Lake District kitchen.

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honour and a privilege Chef Andrew Beaton at the Miller Howe Restaurant. Inset, the main course which he cooked for the Queen. Right, Mr Beaton meeting the Queen after the meal

But Barrow-born Andrew Beaton is still coming to terms with the fact he cooked for the Queen when Her Royal Highness visited the Miller Howe Restaurant in Windermere.

The 31-year-old, who grew up in Ulverston, led the team which prepared food for 34 guests and a buffet for 50 security staff last Wednesday.

And Mr Beaton was delighted to learn HRH had enjoyed his offerings as she greeted him and other staff as she left.

The hotel was informed months in advance and told that HRH specifically requested Morecambe Bay shrimp.

On arrival, the royal party was given a canapé reception, and then served a starter of local smoked salmon and Morecambe Bay shrimp cannelloni, with lemon puree and pickled cucumber.

The main course consisted of a roast loin of Cumbrian spring lamb with a crispy neck, and mini shepherd’s pie with onion puree – followed by a dessert of assiette of lemon and raspberry.

The same royal menu is still on sale at the hotel and has been going down a storm with diners.

Mr Beaton, now of Kendal, said: “I inspected the plates when they came back and she ate all of her starter, most of her main course and most of her dessert as well.

“But to be fair, she was in a rush and said she’d thoroughly enjoyed it. And Anne as well, the Princess Royal.

“It’s the highlight of my career. It doesn’t get much bigger than that really.

“We have cooked for famous people here, but not to that sort of calibre. The Queen, you can’t get much bigger than that.”

Mr Beaton has worked at Linthwaite House Hotel in Windermere and, notably, under Raymond Blanc at his Le Manoir aux Quat’ Saisons in Oxford for a number of years.

But despite his experience, the pressure of cooking for royalty made it a daunting, if hugely rewarding, experience.

He said: “The day itself was very nerve-wracking. When the royal Bentley pulled away, the whole hotel breathed a sigh of relief that it had gone well.

“There was myself and four other chefs and none of us could believe it.

“It was obviously an honour and a privilege, not just for myself but the hotel as well.”

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