Chef Jeff getting Eastern Carolina ready for tailgate season

Chef Jeff getting Eastern Carolina ready for tailgate season

GREENVILLE, NC (WITN) – An Eastern Carolina cooking expert joined WITN’s Sunrise news team to share some recipes ahead of tailgating season.

Jeffrey Yourdon is a Culinary Arts professor at Lenoir Community College. Yourdon prepared two meals for WITN’s Hannah Jeffries, Lauren Baker, and Jim Howard.

He started out with a healthy tailgating option for four people, lettuce wraps.

Chef Jeff’s Lettuce Wrap recipe:


  • 5 cups fresh shiitake mushrooms, loose do not pack
  • 1 ยฝ pounds thin cut chicken breast or chicken tenders
  • 2 tablespoons light colored oil, such as vegetable oil or peanut oil
  • Coarse salt and coarse black pepper
  • 3 cloves garlic, chopped
  • 1 inch ginger root, finely chopped or grated, optional
  • 1 orange, zested
  • 1/2 red bell pepper, diced small
  • 1 small tin, 6 to 8 ounces, sliced โ€‹โ€‹water chestnuts, drained and chopped
  • 3 scallions, chopped
  • 3 tablespoons hoisin
  • 1/2 large head iceberg lettuce, core removed, headquartered
  • Wedges of navel orange — platter garnish


  • Remove tough stems from mushrooms and brush with damp towel to clean, Slice mushrooms. Chop chicken into small pieces.
  • Preheat a large skillet or wok to high.
  • Add oil to a hot pan. Add chicken to the pan and sear meat by stir frying for a minute or 2. Add mushrooms and cook another minute or two. Add salt and pepper to season, then garlic and ginger. Cook a minute more. Grate zest into pan, add bell pepper bits, chopped water chestnuts, and scallions. Cook another minute, continuing to stir fry mixture. Add hoisin and toss to coat the mixture evenly. Transfer the hot chopped barbecued chicken to the serving platter and pile the quartered wedges of crisp iceberg lettuce alongside. Add wedged oranges to platter to garnish. To eat, pile spoonfuls into lettuce leaves, wrapping lettuce around fillings, and squeeze an orange wedge over.

Chef Jeff also prepared four servings of his flank steak recipe for the morning crew.

Chef Jeff’s Grilled Marinated Flank Steak recipe:

  • 1 (2 to 3 pounds) flank steak
  • 1/2 cup vegetable stock
  • 1/2 cup soy sauce
  • 2 tablespoons Creole seasoning
  • 2 tablespoons minced garlic
  • 2 tablespoons brown sugar
  • 1 tablespoon tomato paste
  • 1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper


  • Place the flank steak in a large, plastic re-sealable bag. In a 2-cup measuring cup combine the remaining ingredients. Pour the marinade mixture into the bag with the steak, seal, and marinate in the refrigerator at least 4 hours and up to 12 hours in advance.
  • Preheat a gas or charcoal grill or sautรฉ pan on the stove. Remove the steak from the marinade. Pour the marinade into a small saucepan and bring to a boil. Lower the heat to medium-low and simmer the marinade for 10 minutes. Remove the saucepan from the heat and keep warm. Place the steak on the grill and cook to desired doneness, about 6 minutes per side for rare. Transfer the steak to a plate and let stand for 5 minutes before carving. Cut the steak across the grain into thin diagonal slices, and serve with the marinade sauce.

East Carolina University’s home opener is Saturday against North Carolina State University, making tomorrow the perfect time to try out some of these recipes. If you do, be sure to send a picture to WITN’s Carolina Camera for viewing.

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