The company originated with a drive-in restaurant called "Parkette" in Charleston, West Virginia. Alex Shoenbaum opened the restaurant in 1947, then acquired a Big Boy franchise in 1951. Two years later, Shoenbaum renamed the Parkette "Shoney's Big Boy." During this time, Ray Danner was building a restaurant business in central Tennessee and opened his first Big Boy franchise in 1959 in Madison, Tennessee. He incorporated his privately owned company in 1968

Headquartered in Nashville, Tennessee, Shoney's, Inc., is one of the restaurant industry's most respected companies. As of 1998 the restaurant chain operated or franchised over 1,300 restaurants in 34 states, including Shoney's, Captain D's, and the Pargo's and Fifth Quarter specialty restaurants. The company owned 893 restaurants and franchised 494 others.




Fried Chicken

Big Boy Restaurant Copycat Recipe

Makes 4 servings

1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
4 teaspoons salt                
4 teaspoons paprika            
1/2 teaspoon coarsely ground black pepper
2  large eggs, beaten
1/2 cup cold water      
all purpose flour, as needed
2 1/2 -3 pound broiler fryer chicken, cut up
vegetable oil for frying  as needed

Combine flour and seasonings in a shallow pan. Stir to blend well. Prepare egg wash: combine 2 beaten eggs and 1/2 cup of water until ingredients are thoroughly moistened. Add chicken, 2 or 3 pieces at a time to seasoned flour mixture and turn to coat all sides.  Dip floured chicken in egg wash and then in seasoned flour. Heat vegetable oil. Brown meaty pieces of chicken first, then add other pieces. Don't crowd - you may want to use two skillets.

Brown chicken on one side, turn and brown on second side. When chicken is lightly browned, reduce heat and cover tightly. Cook chicken until tender, approximately 20 to 40 minutes. Uncover chicken during the last 10 minutes of cooking time to allow chicken to crisp.

Notes: If desired, chicken may be deep fried in a preheated 350 degree fryer or deep electric skillet, until chicken is tender and cooked throughout. This method will produce a crispier product.

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