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Culinary style

Fox Run’s newest chef blends ‘contemporary American with a global influence’

Created date

April 18th, 2018
AJ Kershaw is Fox Run’s newest executive chef

AJ Kershaw is Fox Run’s newest executive chef. He most recently worked at Benihana and brings 22 years of experience in the culinary industry to Fox Run.

The food served at Fox Run, an Erickson Living community in Novi, Mich., consistently gets rave reviews from residents and visitors alike. One of the people who orchestrates the preparation of the hundreds of delicious meals that come out of Fox Run’s kitchens each day is Chef AJ Kershaw, who recently became executive chef at the community’s Fireside Restaurant.

Kershaw brings 22 years of experience in the culinary industry to Fox Run. He began his career at a local family restaurant and then attended both a culinary school as well as Northwestern Michigan, where he earned an associate’s degree in culinary science.

Most recently, he worked at Benihana and has also worked in the kitchens at Mitchell’s Fish Market, Brio Italian Grill, Huron River Club, and private country clubs. He came to Fox Run last December.

‘On to something better’

“I decided to audition for the position here because I was professionally ready to manage an operation of this size, and also I did research on Erickson Living, and the feedback that I received was very positive,” he says. “I was ready to get out of the upscale, high-volume corporate life and on to something better.”

Kershaw says he’s impressed with the dining program and the popular recipes at Fox Run. As executive chef, he aims to continue implementing systems to ensure the food that comes out of his kitchen is of the highest possible quality.

“I want to personally make sure all of our guests are fed well and happy with our food program,” he says.

Kershaw describes his culinary style as “contemporary American with a global influence,” as he has experience cooking international cuisine.

He credits his maternal grandfather with inspiring him to become a chef.

“He always would require my help when I was young to pick vegetables from his garden and assist in the cooking process,” Kershaw says.

Personal favorites

As for what this chef cooks and eats when he’s off duty, he says it’s a lot of grilled chicken as well as fresh seafood and good steaks.

“I also love Asian food and love making sushi and sashimi,” he says.

If you want to try a taste of Kershaw’s cooking in your own kitchen, test out his recipe for roasted garlic and balsamic vinaigrette.

Roasted garlic and balsamic vinaigrette

Executive Chef AJ Kershaw


1 garlic bulb

2 cups plus 1 tbsp extra-virgin olive oil, separated

3 cups balsamic vinegar

1 tsp fresh thyme, chopped

1 tsp fresh basil, chopped

1 tbsp white sugar

kosher salt and freshly ground pepper to taste


1. Cut off the top of a fresh garlic bulb and rub down with extra-virgin olive oil.

2. Roast the garlic bulb in the oven at 400° until the garlic becomes tender and has a golden color to it.

3. Gather all ingredients to make the vinaigrette: 2 cups extra-virgin olive oil, 3 cups balsamic vinegar, 1 tsp chopped thyme, 1 tsp chopped basil, 1 tbsp white sugar, and kosher salt and fresh ground pepper to taste.

4. Prepare the emulsion: While using an immersion blender, slowly add the olive oil to the vinegar to create an emulsion (the color should become deep brown). Be careful to not add the oil too quickly or the dressing will break.

5. Add a little of the roasted garlic to the dressing and continue to add to taste.

The dressing should keep in the refrigerator for one week. Serve on your favorite salad; it pairs well with mixed greens and a protein, like grilled chicken.