HAVANA, March 27th The Prince of Wales and Duchess of Cornwall looked to be having a royally good time as they made – and drunk – their own mojitos in Havana today.
The couple were enjoying their last day in the Cuban capital when they decided to get behind the bar and make a couple of the country’s famous rum-based cocktails for themselves.
After adding some mint as a garnish they gamely sipped them for the cameras, despite it being only 11am. The duchess said: ‘Cheers!’
Charles found it hard-going when he agreed to crush some sugar cane in a hand mill during the visit.
He laughed as he struggled to move the handle and said ‘that’s a long piece of sugar cane’ before quickly agreeing to have the sugary liquid it produced pepped up with some local rum.
The couple are on a historic four-day visit to Cuba , becoming the first British royals to set foot on post-revolutionary soil.
Their first engagement of the day was visit to learn about Cuba’s food culture. Charles and Camilla visited a paladar – a privately run restaurant – and were presented with a range of local dishes and produce.
It is understood that the British Embassy rallied around after the duchess’s comments and created an event to showcase Cuban cuisine – and, to be fair, Camilla tucked in.
She was particularly taken by the cheese and bread stand that had been set up at the Habanera restaurant. ‘What are all these different cheeses? They look delicious,’ she said.
The duchess decided to sample some cheese flavoured with ginger. ‘This is just delicious,’ she exclaimed. She declined one with peppers, however, saying: ‘Possibly a little too strong for me.’
Charles also spent time sampling the offerings and told reporters to sample the goats’ cheese. ‘That is very, very good,’ he enthused.
He told the stall holder: ‘I just wish was here for dinner instead of just coming here at eleven o’clock. I’m not sure I deserve it yet,’ he chuckled.
He was so taken by a sample for black bean croquettes, however, that he asked the chef to scribble down the recipe for him so that he could take it home.
Cuban food is a blend of influences including Native American Taino, African, Spanish and Caribbean cuisines. A typical meal consists of roast or fried chicken accompanied by rice, black beans and root vegetables.
Favourite dishes Moro y Cristianos (rice made with black beans) and Tostones (pieces of stuffed plantain, often filled with ham and cheese) as well as tamales, made of a stretchy dough steamed in a corn husk.
Today the couple met chefs and the President of the Cuban Culinary Association, Eddy Fernandez, before being presented with a selection of Cuban dishes and produce. The chefs also explained their origins and development.
With information from www.dailymail.co.uk