Scrumptious Tailgating -- On A Shoestring!

Executive Chef Bradford Thompson works wonders in the kitchen of the Lever House restaurant in New York City, where the food is described as "rugged, yet refined," with fine dining and elegant New American cuisine.

But on Sundays during the football season, Thompson turns into the king of tailgaters, making a hearty, gourmet meal for his friends and family before they watch their beloved New York Giants.

On The Early Show's Saturday Edition, Thompson prepared one of his typical tailgaters' over-the-top party menus - and tried to do it on our skimpy budget of $80 for eight people.

He showed he truly knows how to tailgate in style!


Deep Fried Turkey
Cheese Quesadillas
Jerk Rubbed Pork Shoulder
Brats Cooked in Beer
Grilled Sweet Potato Salad with Mustard Dressing
Parking Lot Beans
Apple Cobbler


  • Brine the turkey to add flavor and moisture.
  • Never poke brats on the grill; they'll lose all their juices.
  • Using cola adds a great sweetness to the beans.


    Deep Fried Turkey


    1 10-12 pound turkey
    2 gallons of water
    2 cups hot sauce, such as Frank's
    1 cup brown sugar


    In a very large container mix together water, sugar and hot sauce, submerge the turkey overnight.

    For safety fry the turkey outside.

    In a large turkey fryer add three gallons of oil. Heat to 325ºF.

    Being careful of the boiling oil, lower turkey into grease, legs first.

    Cook for 40 minutes

    Remove from grease, let it rest for 10 minutes before cutting

    Sweet Potato Salad


    4 Large Sweet potatoes
    Aluminum Foil
    2 tablespoons Mustard
    2 tablespoons of Olive Oil
    2 tablespoons of Bourbon (or something floating around the tailgate)


    Rub olive oil and salt and pepper on the sweet potatoes and wrap them in foil individually.

    Put them on the grill wrapped in foil.

    Cook for 30-40 minutes until just tender.

    Scoop insides out of potatoes and toss it into bowl or aluminum pan.

    While still warm, stir in olive oil, mustard and bourbon.


    Take skins from potatoes, rip into pieces and fry them in turkey fryer.

    Mix fried pieces into potato salad.

    Cheese Quesadillas


    8 large flour tortillas
    2 onions
    1 pound of shredded cheese, mozzarella or cheddar
    2 tablespoons olive oil


    Thinly slice the onion and sauté in oil until caramelized.

    Divide onion and cheese between 8 flour tortillas and fold in half. (Can be done the night before so they're ready to be cooked on the grill)

    Place the tortillas on the grill and cook evenly on each side until cheese melts.

    For plenty more recipes, go to Page 2.