What does the queen like with tea? Jam sandwiches every day

FILE - Queen Elizabeth II looks on during a visit to officially open the new building at Thames Hospice, Maidenhead, England July 15, 2022. Queen Elizabeth II has eaten jam sandwiches every day since she was a toddler, according to her former private chef. Darren McGrady claims on his YouTube channel that the monarch favors a strawberry preserve made from fruits picked in her Balmoral Castle grounds in Scotland. (Kirsty O'Connor/Pool Photo via AP, File) (ASSOCIATED PRESS)

LONDON (AP) — Queen Elizabeth II has eaten jam sandwiches every day since she was a toddler, according to her former private chef.

Darren McGrady claims on his YouTube channel that the monarch favors a strawberry preserve made from fruits picked in her Balmoral Castle grounds in Scotland.

“The queen was served jam pennies in the nursery as a little girl. She’s had them for afternoon tea ever since,” he says in a recently surfaced video published in July last year. The sandwiches are made from bread with a little butter and a spread of jam, then cut out into circles the size of an old British penny.

As part of the genteel tradition of afternoon tea, McGrady, who says he was a chef to the queen for 11 years, also revealed the monarch’s solution to a familiar quandary for British scone lovers: jam first or cream?

“The queen was always jam first,” he said in a separate video. “The jam went on followed by that delicious, clotted cream.”

As well as the preserve, the 96-year old monarch has always been partial to fresh strawberries. “The queen would eat strawberries three or four nights a week in Balmoral if they were in season,” he says.

But woe betide anyone who tried to give her out-of-season berries. A January batch at the supper table would mean “off with your head,” joked McGrady.

The Palace would not comment on the queen’s sandwich preferences.

___

Follow all AP stories on British royalty at https://apnews.com/hub/queen-elizabeth-ii.