Fiona Burrell, founder and principal of Edinburgh New Town Cookery School, gives advice on how to make sure your Christmas canapes are a huge success.

1. Keep the size of the canapes small and ideally to one mouthful each if possible, especially if they are crumbly.

2. If you are only providing canapes and not dinner aim for a range of three to five savoury canapes with two sweet ones at the end of the evening.

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3. Do as much as possible in advance, but don't assemble the canapes until the last minute. Particularly if you are using pastry, biscuits or toast as these will go soggy if left for too long.

4. Provide a range of canapes to allow guests with special dietary requirements, such as vegetarian, gluten-free and dairy-free, to enjoy some too.

5. If you haven't made something before it is a good idea to test the recipe in advance so that you feel completely confident about what you are doing.

READ MORE: Herald writer Susan Swarbrick learns how to make Christmas canapes with top cook Fiona Burrell