It might only be October, but the countdown to Christmas has officially begun....the Booths Christmas Book is out today!
We've been given a sneak preview and can report that if you are looking to make your festive season truly special it doesn't disappoint.
As well as the traditional favourites there are a host of new options to feast your eyes on, including the ability to order party food from December 1 if you are having an early get-together. A great way to take the pressure off all that preparation.
And as each course offers a wine selection to go with the individual dishes, you don't even have to worry if your Sauvignon Blanc will overpower the salmon.
So what will it be this year? Traditional turkey with all the trimmings....or how about guinea fowl, goose or venison. Can't decide? Try a three bird roast so everyone can have three meats at a time! And the vegetarians in the family don't miss out either. That section is bigger than ever for 2019.
So let's start from the beginning. Traditionalists will love the many options for seafood starters. Personally, I've got my eye on the Bleiker's mulled port smoked Scottish salmon, although I'm definitely tempted by the whole tail langoustines and the hand-dived scallops.
Non-fishy types will like the look of Findlater's pate and oatcake Christmas selection - five different types of pate along with some dinky little oatcakes - or even the Stilton stuffed mushrooms.
But that's just a warm up for the main event.
Will your turkey be free range, farm-assured or organic? The whole bird, a crown or a stuffed breast...and by the way there are different stuffings to chose from.
Don't fancy turkey? What about a goose, duck or a box of game...or go the whole hog with one of those three bird roasts...there's everything from turkey, goose and guinea fowl to partridge, pheasant and duck.
But if you want a really top tip from my personal experience, don't allow your eyes to drift past the haunch of mutton. We ordered one last year for New Year's Day and it was sensational. Cook it slowly, for a long time...and then wonder why it isn't available all year round.
This year there are loads of options if you are a small family or a couple - although to me, the leftovers are the real joy of the festive season. But if you really want it all over and done with in a day there are turkey 'paupiettes' or an apple-fed cockerel cushion which should fit the bill.
Trimmings to look out for include a rather swanky swirly wheels in blankets - big swirls of sausage with bacon that look good enough to serve on their own for a Christmas Day breakfast feast.
But if you want to make things really easy, Booths are offering several types of 'Christmas in a box.' For £100 you get either a turkey crown or an extra matured beef rump joint, garnish selection pack, turkey or beef gravy, bread and cranberry sauces, a veg box, extra fruity Christmas pud, Belgian chocolate sponge pudding and Brandy pouring cream. £100 sounds like quite a lot, but think about what you spend buying it all individually and if you want Christmas 'delivered' like Margot from The Good Life , this is the offer for you...and you can even upgrade to the 'ultimate' version for £140.
So what else has caught the eye? Well, I'll definitely be giving the wild boar haunch joint a go. If you like a strong porky flavour, this sounds like the real deal. Maybe not for the big day itself, but what about a family get-together on Christmas Eve?
And if you really want to try something different, what about the Alaskan black cod in miso sauce? Sweet, fishy and oriental all in one. Yum.
But let's not forget the vegetarians. Gone are the days when they were presented with a plate of sprouts, carrots and parsnips and their own version of veggie gravy. This year the Booths book offers a bigger range than ever, including pearl barley risotto - barley and vegetables slowly cooked in mascarpone, red wine and cheese; topped with kale, butternut squash, chestnuts and cranberry sauce; Roasted parsnip, chestnut and butternut squash tart and Wild mushroom, spinach and ricotta filo parcels. Not quite enough to make me give up meat, but sounds good all the same.
And so to the best bit...pudding. Obviously, there are all kinds of Christmas pud and a rather interesting sounding gin fizz trifle, but if you want something a bit less traditional, there's brioche butter pudding, a chocolate melt in the middle pudding and the one which has caught my eye this year.....melting middle sticky toffee pudding. It's described as rich, buttery sponge pudding with juicy dates, filled with a sticky toffee sauce centre and covered in chocolate and caramel ganache, decorated with gold chocolate malted balls and a dusting of glitter. There will be one of those making its way into the Parkinson household on Christmas Eve!
Not got a sweet tooth? Well, as you'd expect from Booths, there are a whole load of cheese options, from individual truckles, to Continental and Northern cheese boards.
There's all manner of party food too and a massive selection of wines, beers and spirits, including the first single malt produced from the Lakes Distillery, near Bassenthwaite.
Still not eaten enough but can't be bothered with more cooking? There are options for the days after, including ready-made game pie, Herdwick lamb hot pot and of course, butter pie.
But my absolute favourite twist this year is that Booths have asked their staff to come up with their favourite Christmas recipes, amongst which there is bacon and sprout soup from Ben at the Media City store and snowberry cake from fresh produce buyer David. Great idea.
So there you have it. Christmas sorted by our very own Lancashire supermarket. Now, where's that order form?