F&W talked to top chefs around the country to learn everything from the quickest way to prepare chicken to the must-have condiments that make almost any dish instantly delicious.

Paul Virant (at right) of Vie in Western Springs, Illinois, uses his pickling liquid to flavor vinaigrettes. He also recommends the liquid from Rick’s Picks Mean Beans: “It conveys the flavor of the beans as well as the pickling spices.” $11 for 15 oz; rickspicksnyc.com.

20 Lessons from the Pros

More Tips & Recipes from Top Chefs

Pan-Seared Sausages with Apples
Credit: © Marcus Nilsson
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