In yet another first for my writing career, I’m interviewing today Bobby Nugget, the official spokesperson for chicken planks (aka chicken strips, chicken nuggets) who is the first and only food product that I’ve ever conducted an interview with. At least that I’ll admit publicly.
Matt: So Bobby, tell me about this new “Top Chicken Plank USA” contest that you’re promoting.
Bobby: Sure, Matt. What we’re doing is having a beauty contest essentially. We’re looking for the best forum for our show and once we find that we’ll announce a date for the contest.
Matt: What makes a good forum for a good-looking, good tasting chicken plank beauty contest?
Bobby: Well, Matt, it starts with the oil. We’re looking for the best oil in use in a fryer system.
Matt: Does the oil really matter?
Bobby: It matters a lot.
There’s a chef in every restaurant. He’s made a choice of what oils to use in the production of the foods he’s (or she’s) going to use when he prepares your meal.
Frying is one area where oil is used until it gives its last dying breath.
It’s heated to hundreds of degrees and food is dropped into it and pulled out of it time and time again until it can’t yield any more positive benefits.
Use the oil too much and the food cooked in it begins to taste like shoes and gets worse with every extra use.
Matt: I think I’ve experienced what you’re referring to, but I didn’t understand why.
Bobby: Right. Here’s where it gets interesting.
Many franchise restaurant systems face a choice with their frying systems that involves tension between quality and price.
The chef wants to provide pristine food product that has you collecting your friends and relatives and bringing them into his restaurant. So he selects a good oil.
If he uses the oil too little, the restaurant has a cost of operation that is right up there with energy costs. If he uses the oil too much, well, you get the idea. My chicken plank buddies won’t jump into just any oil, Matt. Only the best will do.
Matt: So what to do?
Bobby: There are franchise business systems that revolve around this core need. The oil can be cleaned to extend its usable life.
Cleaning fryer oil makes a restaurant’s cash stretch a little further. That means that the patrons of the restaurant can enjoy a renovation a little more often. The chef can perhaps start buying those really billowy pants you see them wearing with interesting prints on them instead of just plain ones.
Matt: I find it fascinating to learn that there are several different franchises that offer services in this area. How do these work?
Bobby: Right. One franchise system offers a guy in a van to show up at your restaurant on a regular basis to clean your frying oil, then put it back in your holding tanks.
Another franchise offers portable oil-filtering units that can be rented by the restaurant on a monthly basis to purify the oil at the intervals that the chef decides.
Matt: In the scheme of things, this is a very “inside baseball” way to make a living.
Bobby: The palates of busy moms with their mini-vans full of children will never appreciate the oil cleaning franchise owner.
But these very same moms reward the owners and operators of restaurants across the nation with their patronage.
Matt: Thanks, Bobby. Good luck with your “Top Chicken Plank USA” contest.
Do you want to do something that will make moms in mini-vans full of children happy? Take a look at franchises that offer unique methods of filtering cooking oil.
Kids everywhere on their way to and from soccer games will appreciate you, if ever so indirectly.