A couple of weeks ago I got a strange invite on Facebook to an event called “Detroit Egg tasting party at my house”. That’s a weird one, right?
The invite was from Norm “DJ Meph” Witte III, one of our very own contributors. The Detroit Egg was his baby, and he was ready to unleash it upon the city.
Here’s how the story goes:
While Norm was traveling in Manchester, United Kingdom, he spent four days searching for the fabled Manchester Egg; he eventually found a pub that served it and struck up a conversation with a local. As it turns out, many cultures have their own signature “egg”. Of course, the Scotch Egg is one of the most popular, but there’s also a London Egg, the infamous Balut, and let’s not forget the 100-year egg.
There was no Detroit Egg, though. DJ Meph set out to change that and when he got back to Detroit, he started experimenting.
He settled on a recipe that contains entirely Michigan-based ingredients—hard boiled local eggs, pickling brine from McClure’s Pickles, Michigan classic Jiffy cornbread mix, Meijer brand pork sausage, and Michigan-made maple syrup.
The tasting party was a small group of Norm’s close friends. Emily Doerr from Hostel Detroit, Nicole Lapointe from Pinwheel Bakery, local photographer Tina Logan, Portage Digital Media’s Jeremiah Staes, Detroit-based fashion designer Adriana Pavon and her father, two of Norm’s close friends from childhood, and me.
The egg was served piping hot, and when cut open, revealed the layers of magic involved in such a seemingly simple dish:
The flavors are solid, and the interesting mix of textures and tastes is destined to be a Detroit classic. The tang of McClure’s pickle, the sweet and salty sausage/maple combo, the crunchy fried cornbread coating all mix up really well in your mouth. This is going to be a phenomenal bar snack or appetizer.
Norm asked for suggestions on how to improve it. I told him the egg could stand to be pickled longer so that the yolk takes in some of the pickle flavor. Nicole gave him some suggestions on improving the coating and frying process. Emily had some suggestions on where (and to whom) to pitch the Detroit Egg idea.
Norm is doing something off-the-wall with this. He’s releasing it under the Creative Commons license, meaning any restaurant can put it on their menu as long as they give some tiny attribution: “The Detroit Egg was invented by DJ Meph” or “DJ Meph’s Detroit Egg”, etc.
Hopefully we’ll see this truly Detroit creation on local menus soon. Perhaps one day it will be as synonymous with Detroit as Faygo.
No matter what, I can say I was there first. Thanks for the awesome opportunity, Norm!
Yeah, I said it.
I mean, it's a great idea, but I don't think there's any way to legally hold them to giving him credit. It'd mostly be them doing it because they're cool.
I'm gonna have to make sure I try one of these if I make it up to Detroit.