"Ventilation was one of the big bugbears over the last seven or eight years, but because of the large height of the kitchen, nothing could be done," says royal chef Lionel Mann, who has worked in the royal kitchens for 41 years, having originally served an apprenticeship in the kitchens of Vauxhall Motors in Luton, Bedfordshire.
With this experience behind them, Mann
chefs and the rest of the palace team had a clear idea of what they wanted to achieve at Buckingham Palace, which was last fully renovated in the late 1960s and early 1970s.
For about 18 months while the new kitchen was being built and installed, Mann
team worked from a temporary kitchen created within the palace.
"You can't use too high a pot on the modern stoves because of the fire suppression system," says Mann
Ambach ranges have been incorporated into the island suites, some with solid tops and some with gas burners.
especially likes the design of the solid tops, which are rectangular with a gully around them where any spills drain, to be collected in a drawer underneath.
heads a brigade of 20 chefs who work in all the royal palaces, following the Queen around the country.
chef's jacket are several medal ribbons - two are Victorian Order medals, one is a Silver Jubilee medal and a fourth is his
There is a great deal of stainless-steel countering, made by Spectrum, for prep, and many of the island counters have power points to avoid trailing cables.
All the Rational combination ovens in the kitchen (three in total) have their own Brita water-filter system.
"We used to have to descale the ovens," explains Mann
"Combi-ovens have taken over a lot of the work steamers used to do," he
says, adding that he
still likes to use the Electrolux high-pressure steamer for vegetables and steamed puddings.
A group of Frymaster fryers has a Filter Magic II filter alongside them.
previous fryers had an automatic filtration system but that it didn't work terribly well.