Could Welsh butter be the secret to a winning Platinum Pudding as Queen's Jubilee competition begins

Anyone aged eight and above can submit a competition entry, with the winner announced in March. Credit: PA Images

With the Queen’s 70th anniversary as Monarch just four weeks away, Buckingham Palace has outlined a programme of events taking place this year to mark the Platinum Jubilee.

While most festivities are taking place in May, when bank holidays have been scheduled to run together for a four day weekend, a special celebratory competition has been launched today.

Fortnum & Mason has begun their Platinum Pudding Competition, inviting members of the public to design their own, new dessert dish dedicated to the Queen's 70 years on the throne. Dame Merry Berry and the Head Chef at Buckingham Palace will be judging recipes and deciding which to crown the winner.

It is hoped the winning dessert will go down in history and follow in the footsteps of Coronation Chicken - designed in 1953 to mark the Queen taking to the throne.

With budding bakers across the country now dreaming up their own creations, ITV Wales spoke to former The Great British Bake Off contestant, Jon Jenkins from Monmouthshire, about what he thinks would make the perfect royal pud.

Jon thinks people should keep their designs simple, perhaps reinventing a classic.

Key to a Platinum Pudding win in Jon's mind is keeping it simple and adding a Welsh twist.

"Don't do something big and glamorous," explained Jon.

"My history of baking on Bake Off, it never looked good and I don't always care if it looks good - as long as it tastes nice and fills that gap.

"Just keep it plain and simple. I think something like a bread and butter pudding, with a little bit of a Welsh twist on it.

"Use bara brith instead of a plain bread, with some lovely salted Welsh butter, a drizzle of Welsh whiskey over the top and then a lovely crème anglaise. I know that sounds a bit French, but you can use the word custard or crème anglaise, it's up to you but just make sure there's some good, proper vanilla pods used in making it."

Putting a fresh, Welsh angle on a classic pudding is something Jon thinks could help create a new tradition.

"I just think in the modern era, things move pretty fast. In three days' time everything is yesterday's news.

"It's very hard these days to make things stick, but I think every effort should be made to really go for it with some things so we do have modern traditions, modern classics, rather than just the old classics.

"But mine is a twist on an old classic anyway, so one of the staple desserts we have always had out there.

"I would love to see [the Platinum Pudding] put in the shops, recipes everywhere, everybody does their Platinum Pudding...and make sure it's got a Welsh touch!"

When it comes to indulging in a dessert, Jon said there does not need to be a special occasion "just a Tuesday will do it". When asked in his eyes, what the royalty of the dessert world is, the 50-year-old said he does like a roulade - a dish that won him a handshake from Bake Off judge Paul Hollywood back in 2018.

Jon said: "A meringue roulade, that is always something that's really nice.

"But it's the word pudding and the word dessert, to me they are two different things. Dessert is more creamy and has got fruit in it, like raspberry and white chocolate and things like that.

"When it's pudding, it's got to be sticky. It's got to be spongy and stodgy and have that crème anglaise custard on it."

People have until the 4th of February to design and submit their own sweet dish recipe, fit for a Queen.

Other Platinum Jubilee events taking place include the 95-year-old monarch opening her private estates to the public, and some of the world’s biggest stars performing outside Buckingham Palace.

Queen Elizabeth II is already the longest serving Monarch in British history - with no British Monarch ever hitting the Platinum Jubilee milestone previously.