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.

At Sebo in San Francisco, Michael Black has a three-part test for determining whether a fish is fresh:

He looks at it to make sure it has clear, shiny eyes and bright red gills.

He pokes it to make sure the flesh is taut

He sniffs it to make sure there’s no fishy odor.

20 Lessons from the Pros

More Tips & Recipes from Chefs

Steamed Salmon with Watercress and Lemon Butter
Mahimahi with Herbed White-Wine Sauce
Credit: © Kana Okada
Fresh Tuna Salad with Avocado
Credit: © Frances Janisch