STUDENTS at The School of Hospitality & Food at Bournemouth and Poole College will be hosting a colourful celebration of the Chinese New Year.

There will be a five course Chinese banquet including a reception cocktail held on February 5 at The Escoffier restaurant.

Award-winning lecturer Josephine Pearce said: “Chinese New Year is a time of change and food is one of the main means of celebrating.

“We have been hosting this celebration every year and it is always a sell out – we have a waiting list for next year!”

Former student and renowned Oriental chef Andy Chu will be overseeing the festivities.

“The secret of good Chinese cooking is to stick to the traditional recipes,” he said.

The menu includes the Millionaire Horse Cocktail – with lychee, peach snapps, cranberry/ pink grapefruit juice, along with vegetable spring rolls and New Year salad, sesame chicken toast and steamed king prawn asparagus for starters.

These are followed by wonton soup, aromatic crispy duck with pancakes, sweet and sour pork Forbidden City Style with fried rice or chow mein.

The meal is rounded off with kumquat cake, pandan and coconut jelly, melon ginger sorbet with five spice peanut praline.

Chef lecturer Debbie Sherman, who created the dessert explained: “It is said that in China before the start of the Luna Year, kumquat trees are put outside the doors of houses and businesses to bring good luck and prosperity.

“They are as essential to the festival as the lion dancers or children waving their scarlet packets of ‘lucky money’.

“Peanuts are an auspicious symbol the second character (sheng) means to ‘give birth’ so it symbolises the wish for many children and for longevity.

“Chinese five spice is the greatest culinary formula of all time – fennel seeds, cassia, cloves, star anise and Sichuan peppercorns brings together China’s many distinctive cuisines, a balancing act on the tongue, warm and cool, bitter and sweet – Yin and Yang.”

Lecturer Josephine Pearce added: “Chef Sherman is a patisserie chef extraordinaire, the X factor of the team!”