Will you be drinking ale with your Christmas dinner?

More people than ever before will be drinking ale with their Christmas dinner this year.

In the last week shoppers have created a new record demand for ale with an astonishing 2.5 million bottles sold by Tesco.

Christmas dinner - why not try some ale with it this year

Christmas dinner – why not try some ale with it this year

Not only is it the highest ever demand for a single week but the figure is one million bottles more than the same week before Christmas last year.

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Tis the season to enjoy festive cheeses

One of the great culinary joys of Christmas is sitting down with a nice glass of port and tucking into some wonderful cheeses – the stronger tasting the better as far as I’m concerned.

For most of my adult life that meant a nice chunk of Stilton, Cheddar and a Camembert or Brie as a soft cheese all served up with some crackers, chutney and pickled onions.

Stilton is by far the UK's favourite cheese at Christmas

Stilton is by far the UK’s favourite cheese at Christmas

But nowadays a whole mini industry has grown around festive cheeses as the traditional final course on Christmas Day has grown into a much more sumptuous affair, with even more tantalizing creations to tempt our taste buds.

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Sweet and savoury snack ideas for Christmas

With party season in full flow here are a few sweet and savoury nibbles recommended by Tesco food product developer Sharon Murphy that could help your event stand out from the rest.

I’m particularly fond of the Chocolate Tasting Experience box which contains chocolate from seven different parts of the world – each offering their own different taste.

But what makes the selection special is a matching wheel included in the box that allows users to find recommended pairings for wines, spirits, drinks such as tea and coffee as well as other foods including cheese, dates and nuts.