Satellite trucks and a makeshift outdoor kitchen crowded Gate T at Northwestern University’s Ryan Field this morning as Big Ten Cookout was broadcast live at 9 a.m.

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Chicago Chef Julius Russell dressed some rib-eye steaks with juniper balsamic demi glace aided by host Melanie Collins, while Northwestern cheerleaders screamed and chanted in the background.

Willie the Wildcat closely inspected each step of the process.


Stepping around cables and cameramen, a small audience that watched the show included home economists from Western Springs and Northfield as well as fans of the Wildcats and the University of Minnesota Gophers, NU’s opponent for the day. After the show, samples of the steak and grilled asparagus were passed around. Mmm – tasty. Even at 9:30 a.m.

Big Ten Cookout is designed to showcase “deliciously easy” grilling recipes, suitable for tailgating. It will be broadcast live from a different Big Ten school. For more about Chef Julius, and to get a copy of each week’s recipe, check A Tale of Two Chefs.

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