To be honest, this wedding really is the Queen’s party.
She’s footing a good chunk of the bill and the celebrations are at her palace. So it wouldn’t be right or proper for us to have a feast that didn’t honour her contribution to the day.
These nibbles hail from the day Queen Elizabeth II embarked as the third-longest-reigning monarch of the United Kingdom.
This now classic British dish was created for the Coronation celebrations of June 2, 1953 by Constance Spry and Rosemary Hume. It’s a curious combination of cold chicken and curried cream dressing with apricots. The thinking behind it was that it kept well for a crowd and conveyed the gentle colonial role played by Her Majesty.
Coronation Chicken is traditionally a happy friend to rice salad, cool pastry cups and finger sandwiches. Here it finds its way into a light canapé where it rests in hollowed crowns of cucumber.
There have been a few changes to the dish to keep up with the times.
Here it’s crested with slivers of dried mango, a twist of chilli and some toasted almonds. The cucumber casing provide a cool exterior. The mango shows an unexpectedly sweet side. And the rest of the filling is rich and restrained, with a sturdy spine of vigorous spice- not unlike our Sovereign.
“Dedicated to Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II with respectful good wishes” is the appropriate wording to dedicate a book to Her Majesty.
I hope it’s the same for a cucumber crown.
The Queen’s Coronation Cucumber Crowns
Makes around 50 cucumber crowns
Each person will probably eat 4-5 crowns with drinks. You could also use the filling for finger sandwiches or to fill cold pastry casings.
1 fry pan. 1 fork to score the cucumber.
2 cups of poached chicken, shredded
¼ cup dried mango, cut into shards
½ cup crème fraiche
¼ cup toasted slivered almonds
¼ cup mint leaves, cut into slivers
¼ cup coriander leaves, roughly chopped
1 tablespoon of coriander roots, thinly diced
1 teaspoon of turmeric
1 tablespoon of mixed spice (aka Pumpkin Pie Spice)
1 tablespoon of ground cumin
1 red chilli, thinly sliced
2 tablespoons of lemon juice
Here’s how we roll
1. Toast the spices in a dry fry pan.
2. Add the lemon juice to form a slurry.
4. Mix the crème fraiche with the poached chicken and half of the chopped chilli. Add the chopped mint and coriander leaves.
5. Take two large cucumbers and score the edges with a fork.
6. Cut into 2 cm segments. Scoop 2/3 of the centre out, creating a well.
7. Fill the well with the coronation chicken mixture. Top with coriander leaves, toasted almonds, slivers of chilli and some dried mango.
Other items in the Royal Wedding Feast: