Happy Chefsgiving: Eric Shelton

by Steven Doyle

Thanksgiving is upon us once again and all the gobblers are running for cover. To get you in the mood for a little fun and relaxation we asked a few chefs around Dallas several questions so we get our dinner cooked just right. We ran some of these yesterday and have some fun chefs lined up for today, so check back often to see how your favorite chef weighs in on the holiday.

Eric Shelton is the chef-genius at M Dining and prepares all the pre-theater dining for the Dallas Summer Musicals. His shift goes well beyond matching dinner with musicals, although that seems to be a fun gig. He also hosts enormous catering events in Dallas and across the country. You may have seen Chef Shelton in fabulous kitchen such as the original Green Room (Marc Cassel era) and a stint at the Anatole’s Nana among others.

This Johnson and Wales grad is talented and there doesn’t seem to be enough love flowing for great chefs who labor in catering. Shelton has a beautiful, young family and has started his own holiday traditions.   

What turkey advice can you send our way?

Brine your  turkey the day before and or season an hour before to dissolve all seasonings. Drink plenty of craft beef while doing step one.

Canned or fresh cranberries?

Canned cranberries. I grew up on that can shaped mold with the fun striped indentations on it; classic.

What are your favorite childhood Thanksgiving dishes?

My childhood favorite dish was my mom’s collard greens with neck bones. Mom was doing the offal thing before it was popular and we were poor. Kinda, ha.

Suggest a good Thanksgiving pot luck dish.

A great pot luck dish is corn and oysters. My Midwestern wife taught me this one. Simply corn, oysters, butter, and oyster crackers.  Spice and you are done… taste great!

What is Plan B after we burn the bird today?

After burning the bird we scrape the black off like charred toast and then eat the bird.

What is your favorite Thanksgiving tradition?

My Favorite holiday tradition is watching the Charlie Brown Thanksgiving episode and packing in dessert. Oh and spending time with my family, creating traditions with my wife and baby girl Emma.

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