Guy Fieri knows a thing or two about chicken. The celebrity chef, alongside restaurateur Robert Earl, has proved that with their new restaurant Chicken Guy! at Disney Springs in Walt Disney World. The fast-casual concept has been a runaway success in Orlando — it isn’t unusual to see a line out the door. So what’s the secret for perfect chicken? He clearly has it. We decided to ask the Food Network star ourselves, and well, it turns out it’s not such a secret after all.
"[Making perfect chicken] is real straightforward, and it’s the same principle we apply to anything we want to be good at: quality ingredients and proper technique,” Fieri told us in a phone interview. “It’s all out there… If you use chicken that hasn’t been frozen and is antibiotic-free and you hand-bread it and fry it the same day and use good oil and clean your fryers and scratch-make your sauces. It’s all about the basics. You know that book ‘All I Really Need to Know I Learned in Kindergarten’? It’s like that.”
So beyond having fresh, antibiotic-free chicken and making everything by hand, how can home cooks make sure that their chicken tenders are as delicious as humanly possible? Fieri has another tip: It’s all about the knife skills.
“Good knife skills are quintessential to the success of a dish. Cutting everything into a uniform size helps it to cook at the right time,” he revealed. “It’s one of those things people don’t like to do. People don’t like to do the mise en place and get everything ready because it involves really knowing how to use a knife. I just tell people all the time ‘practice, practice, practice’ and refine your skills with the correct methods.”
So if you want to be a chicken guy like Chicken Guy!, remember those three things: Have high-quality ingredients, make everything from scratch and refine your knife skills. Now that you know how to make perfect chicken, put it into practice with these 101 incredible chicken recipes.