Southwest Minnesota State University

Mustang Mardi Gras Tailgate Festival

Saturday, October 10, 2009

Our Tailgate Menu:

Throwdown Chicken and Sausage Jambalaya

New Orleans Style Red Beans with Smoked Alligator Sausage and Chicken Stock Rice

Mini Muffalettas

Smoked Boudin

New Orleans Style BBQ Shrimp with French Bread

Stuffed New Potatoes (leftovers from the Gala)

Fried Alligator on a Stick


 After the Homecoming Parade I hurried over to the Culinology Kitchen to start cooking for the Tailgate Festival.  As you can see from above this is a pretty ambitious menu.  OK, another "Dinner Impossible" episode!  My rock, the guy that I have relied on for 3 days is not there!! Michael has other plans! OMG!! He never told me! Mustang Mardi Gras Homecoming VilageOMG...... But he has scheduled several of his best students to assist me for the planned events today.

Our first problem was to find everything!!  Some of the excess food was brought over to Aramark's kitchen for refrigeration, some was brought back to the Culinology kitchen, and some we had no idea what happened to it!  Also, my Jambalaya Rigs were auctioned off at the Gala, and we needed them for the Tailgate!

Our first task was to find everything that we need from the Culinology kitchen.   

I really wanted to make some Red Beans and Rice.  I knew that people would love them because they are internal Cajun napalm and will warm you from within, even in the snow!  Red Beans with Smoked Alligator Sausage We took the left over Smoked Alligator Sausage from the Gala, seasoned the Red Beans and put them on to boil! 

OK, so it is divide and conquer time again!    SO, I left Brian in the kitchen to watch the beans and cook the rice.  I knew I could trust him with several things to do because he has had much restaurant experience.  Later in the day I took the pic at right, notice most of those Red Beans are gone!!!!  And everyone smiling!

Sanjay, Myself, Tim Kellen and Angie Havens, cook JambalayaChad and I boogied over to Aramark's kitchen to find our refrigerated stuff that got mistakenly sent over to their kitchen.  Loaded up my rental car with the Jambalaya Concentrate that we had made a couple of days earlier, and boogied to the Festival Tent.  Viola!! There are my Jambalaya Rigs, but no propane, back to the Culinology kitchen.  Find the tanks, pack 'em and back to the tent.  So, we begin to cook. OMG, NO Water!!!  We had to send out back to the kitchens to get 6 gallons of water. GOT IT, and finished the Jambalaya.Executive Chef Dennis Nord and myself, and ALLIGATOR! (From L to R, Sanjay, myself, Tim Kellen and Angie Havens.)

 We made up the batter for frying the alligator.  Chef Dennis Nord batters Alligator on a StickI used my Fried Eggplant Batter as a base, and just substituted corn meal for corn flour.  At first we had problems getting both fryers working, but as usual Aramark came to the rescue and fixed the fryers.  In fact, Chef Dennis developed a way to fry the alligator first (so as to cook the meat through) then dip the sticks in the batter, and refry them.  Brian checks out Alligator on a StickThey were perfect, light brown and cooked meat.   Brian was just in time to be our test guinea pig! (left)

We used Aramark's hot boxes to warm our Stuffed New Potatoes and Mini Muffs.  So we were almost complete. 

On the plane ride up, I had checked as my luggage, 50 lbs of fresh 9-12 count Louisiana Shrimp, now it was time to cook 'em.  Again Chef Dennis came to our assistance, I had asked to use his personal propane burner and Dutch Oven to cook our BBQ Shrimp.  He brought it from home, we fired it up and started cookin'.  They were an immediate hit!!!!  The smell and flavor brought over Tim Kellen, Food Service Director of Aramark.  I told him that we would cook them, but he took it on himself to do them!! WOW, that really impressed me.  OK, Actually, I think he wanted to eat 'em all, and tried to!!!

SMSU Tailgaters peeling New Orleans Style BBQ ShrimpAramark had set up picnic tables inside the tent for people to eat.  That was a good thing, because our Tailgaters had to take off their gloves to peel the BBQ Shrimp.  Many people told me that it was the first time that they had seen shrimp with their heads on!! BUT, hey word got around how good the sauce was; they didn't seem to mind.

OK, with everything cooking, it gave me a couple of minutes to walk around and check out the festivities.  Check out the pic on right, they are selling hunting gear. This is my kind of place!! Snow Bunnies

I ran into a group of students and alums in the parking lot.  Let me tell ya, Tailgating is Tailgating, no matter where you go ....... Campers painted in school colors...Fire....Cold Beer.... and pretty CoEds....There is a Gaud!!!!SMSU Football Homecoming 2009


Oh yea, there was a football game, lets not talk about that!...

OMG, I have another location to setup.  President Danahar's private box suite at the top of the stadium. Gotta GO!


Thanks to Jim Tate and Michael Cheng of SMSU for taking and supplying many of the above pics!!

Check out many other pics on Michael Cheng's Facebook Photo Album

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Chef Emile L. Stieffel, Aurora Catering, Inc. email address:
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Revised: November 21, 2016.