Football and fall sports are like a religion in Detroit. And like any good religion, there are going to be some rituals that go along with that. One of those is the act of tailgating — hanging out with family and friends outside the stadium or in a yard before the big game. Any good tailgate needs some great and hearty food to go along with it to keep everyone tied over before the action starts. Here are a few unique recipes from some of the area’s best culinary talents that will wow your family and friends at your next tailgate.

Chef Takashi Yagihashi
Slurping Turtle 
608 E. Liberty St.
Ann Arbor, MI 48104
(734) 887-6868

Chef Takashi Yagihashi opened his namesake Chicago restaurant, Takashi, in December of 2007 to immediate critical and consumer success. Both Esquire and Chicago Magazine named Takashi a “Best New Restaurant.” He then opened Noodles by Takashi Yagihashi, a quick-service restaurant that was named one of the “Five Best Noodle Shops in America” by Bon Appetit. In 2010, Takashi received a coveted Michelin star and has continued this success every year since. In late 2011, he brought Japanese comfort food, focusing on ramen, items from the bincho grill and sashimi, to Chicago’s River North neighborhood with Slurping Turtle. It became an instantaneous success and earned a Michelin Bib Gourmand Award in 2013. In 2014, Slurping Turtle expanded to Ann Arbor, Michigan. Currently, Takashi is competing against former “Top Chef” and “Top Chef Masters” personalities in a new Bravo series “Top Chef Duels.”

Miso Ramen

  • 8 cups Ramen chicken stock
  • 2 tablespoons vegetable oil
  • 8 cups bean sprouts
  • 2/3 cup garlic chives, cut into 1-inch lengths
  • 4 (7-ounce) pieces frozen ramen noodles
  • 1/2 cup drained canned sweet corn
  • 4 teaspoons ground sesame seeds
  • Pinch of sansho pepper (Japanese pepper seedpods)
  • 2 scallions, both white and green parts, thinly sliced on an angle

Miso Base

  • 2 tablespoons sesame oil
  • 1/2 cup minced onion
  • 2 tablespoons grated ginger
  • 1/4 cup minced garlic
  • 1 cup ground pork (about 8 ounces)
  • 1/2 cup shiro miso (white miso)
  • 1/4 cup ada miso (red miso)
  • 1/4 cup ground sesame seeds
  • 5 tablespoons hoisin sauce
  • 1 tablespoon tobanjan (Chinese chili paste)
  • 3 tablespoons Japanese soy sauce


  1. To make the miso base, combine the sesame oil, onion, ginger and garlic in a small saucepan over medium-low hear. Cook, stirring often, for 6 minutes, or until the ingredients are soft and fragrant. Mix in the ground pork and increase the heat to medium. Cook for an additional 6 to 7 minutes, or until the pork is completely cooked through.
  2. Stir in both misos, the sesame seeds, hoisin sauce, tobanjan and soy sauce, and bring to a boil. Leftover miso base will keep refrigerated for up to 1 week or frozen for up to 2 months.
  3. To make the ramen, combine the ramen chicken stock and 1 3/4 cups of the miso base in a pot set over high heat to make the miso broth. Bring to a boil, and then reduce the heat to low and cover to keep warm.
  4. Heat the vegetable oil in a large, wide-bottomed pot over high heat. Add the bean sprouts and garlic chives and cook for 1 minute, stirring often. Add the miso broth and bring to a boil. Cook for 1 minute, then turn off the heat.
  5. Add the ramen noodles to the boiling water and cook, following package instructions. Drain well and divide among 4 bowls. Top each with one-fourth of the broth and vegetables. Garnish each bowl with 2 tablespoons of the corn kernels, 1 teaspoon of the ground sesame seeds, the sansho pepper and one-fourth of the sliced scallions. Serve hot.



  • 2 (3-ounce) pieces dried ramen noodles
  • 3 tablespoons vegetable oil
  • 6 ounces thinly sliced beef rib eye
  • 1 cup thinly sliced onions
  • 1/2 cup peeled and thinly sliced carrots
  • 8 shiitake mushrooms, stemmed and thinly sliced
  • 1/2 cup stemmed enoki mushrooms
  • 4 scallions, both white and green parts, thinly sliced on an angle
  • 1/4 cabbage, cored and thinly sliced
  • 4 cups bean sprouts
  • 1/2 cup tonkatsu sauce (semisweet)
  • 1 tablespoon ketchup
  • 1 tablespoon Japanese soy sauce
  • 2 tablespoons beni shoga (red pickled ginger)
  • 2 tablespoons finely shaved katsuobushi (dried bonito flakes)


  1. Place a large pot of water over high heat and bring to a boil. Add the noodles and cook, following package instructions. Rinse under cold running water. Once chilled, drain well and set aside.
  2. While the noodles are cooking, heat 2 tablespoons of the vegetable oil in a large sauté pan place over high heat. When the oil just begins to smoke, stir in the beef and cook for 1 minute, stirring often. Remove the beef from the pan and place it on a plate. Set aside.
  3. Return the pan with the oil still in it to high heat and add the remaining 1 tablespoon of oil. Add the onions, carrots, both mushrooms, scallions and cabbage. Cook for 3 to 4 minutes, stirring often, until the vegetables just begin to soften. Add the bean sprouts, cooked noodles and beef, and cook for 1 minute longer, until all of the ingredients are heated through.
  4. Stir in the tonkatsu sauce, ketchup and soy sauce. Cook for 1 to 2 minutes for the sauce to thicken, stirring often. Remove the pan from the heat and divide the noodles, vegetables and beef among 4 plates. Garnish each one with the beni shoga and bonito flakes.

Related: Best Places For Families To Watch The Game In Detroit

Chef Josef M. Huber
The Amway Grand Plaza Hotel  
187 Monroe Ave. N.W.
Grand Rapids, MI 49503
(616) 774-2000

Chef Josef M. Huber realized his calling at the age of 16 as an apprentice at the Five-Star, Five-Diamond Elisabethpark in his scenic home of Salzburg, Austria. Huber’s journey brought him to many premiere luxury establishments including The Imperial and Bristol Hotel in Vienna, Wild Coast Sun Hotel and Casino in South Africa, The Regency in Bangkok, French Bistro in Epcot Center, Orlando, The Breakers Hotel in Palm Beach, The Mandarin Oriental in Hawaii and more. Chef Huber has had the honor of serving the last six presidents of the United States and now puts his knowledge and expertise to work as Corporate Executive Chef at Amway Hotel Corporation in Grand Rapids, Michigan.

Chef Huber’s homemade BLT (Courtesy of Josef M. Huber)

Turkey BLT

  • 1/2 cup chopped romaine lettuce
  • 1 strip of bacon, chopped
  • Sliced turkey
  • Slice of green and red tomato
  • Avocado spread (avocado, sour cream, diced red onion, lemon juice)
  • Slice of grilled bread
  • Cilantro (optional)


  1. Pile turkey, tomatoes and lettuce on top of grilled bread.
  2. Push a sanitized soup can over the sandwich to cut a perfect circle.
  3. Top with avocado spread.

Garnish the plate with chopped bacon, cilantro and Hotel Kitchen Sweet & Hot Mustard (or another mustard of your choice).

Chef Huber’s Pork Belly Burger (Courtesy of Josef M. Huber)

Pork Belly Burger w/ Hotel Kitchen Thai Curry Glaze

  • 1 pound pork belly (trimmed of skin) cooked sous vide (slow cooked, cured pork belly from upscale butcher) cut into 4-ounceportions
  • 1 jalapeno  (thinly sliced)
  • 1 bunch cilantro
  • 1 head iceberg lettuce (pulled into individual leaves)
  • 4 soft boiled eggs
  • 4 fresh bakery slider roll


  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 1/2 cup water
  • 1/8 cup of fish sauce
  • 1/4 cup lime juice

Combine all above ingredients in a sauce pan and reduce until syrup consistency over medium heat. Set aside to cool. Add 1/2 cup
The Hotel Kitchen Thai Ketchup (or another Thai sauce of your choice) and stir.


  1. Score the pork belly with Xs.
  2. Grill over medium heat until outside is crispy.
  3. Grill the bottom half of the rolls
  4. Place rolls on a platter and coat with the sauce. Then place cilantro sprigs, lettuce and jalapeño slices on it.
  5. Place the crisp and hot pork belly on top of the lettuce mix and top with 1/2 soft cooked egg (upside down).
  6. Garnish with cilantro and drizzle sauce on top. Serve extra sauce on the side.

Related: Best Restaurants In Detroit Worth The Hype

Michael Ferro is freelance writer and a graduate of Michigan State University where he majored in Creative Writing and received the Jim Cash Creative Writing Award. Born and bred in Detroit, he currently resides in Ypsilanti Township. Additional writing can be found at