The Royal Family has many beloved and well-known Christmas traditions, from spending the holidays at Sandringham to giving each other gag gifts. But as for their favourite Christmas memories... less is common knowledge there.
But this week, royal fans were given some insight on Duchess Camilla’s family Christmases thanks to a Town & Country interview with her son, Tom Parker Bowles. He has just released a new cookbook, Christmas & Other Winter Feasts, and spent part of the interview discussing one of his favourite holiday memories. It involves his mother’s rather... amusing way of cooking a turkey!
“[I remember] my mother and aunt waking up and kicking a turkey into an Aga, which is a sort of always-on English cooking thing that you have in the country,” he explained. “They always made a big deal of it, and sweating away and pushing it... at six o’clock in the morning.”
It’s a scene that might be similar to many of our own Christmas meal preparations (one of our editors’ families cooks their turkey upside-down on purpose after a “fortunate accident” one year!), but it is interesting to imagine the Duchess of Cornwall doing it!
Tom also reveals Camilla was quite good at cooking, especially roast chicken.
“She was good about that, and she was brilliant at that sort of very traditional English stuff. Cooking fish, cooking meats,” he said.
Tom said his dad, Andrew Parker Bowles, was in the army and travelled a lot. He said Camilla often cooked. He added, "There was always food and it was always good.”
Camilla has had a chance to experience food and cooking from all over as part of her royal duties. During her royal tour of New Zealand with Prince Charles in November, the pair visited a farmer’s market, where they sampled local cheese.
In July 2019, the duchess showcased her impressive pasty making during a visit to mark the 50th anniversary of Ginsters Bakery.
She modestly said, “I think this is going to be a wibbly-wobbly pasty. With a bit of practice I think I would get the hang of it.”