2 Edmonton stores waging friendly family feud with secret chicken recipe
EDMONTON -- Ralph’s Handi Mart in Strathearn has everything you’d expect to find in a convenience store, and something else that has customers flocking here.
“I have people that come from the Yukon, Montreal, Toronto, anytime they’re in Edmonton, they come here, “says co-owner Walid Saleh.
They come to the store to grab something that sits in a glass case beside chocolate bars and over the counter cold medicine: fried chicken. It’s cooked fresh in the back every day, like it has been for over three decades, using a recipe even a colonel can’t get.
“It’s a secret and only my dad knows. I don’t even know it. I couldn’t tell you what the secret is but I do know it’s delicious,”says Saleh.
It’s so delicious that it sells out almost every day, has been celebrated online and has caught the attention of local food enthusiast Donovan Workun. Workun was impressed with the coating which he says is not too greasy and not too dry.
“This is the greatest chicken ever,” Workun says after biting into a piece.
However, there is another store in Edmonton claiming they have the best chicken ever. Sunshine food store in Londonderry sells chicken in a glass case on their counter that looks, smells and tastes remarkably similar.
“It’s good,” says Workun after sampling a drumstick. “That is the same.”
It’s no coincidence the chicken is so similar as deliciousness runs in the family.
“The recipe is from my grandma,” says Max Saleh who runs Sunshine Food Store.
That secret recipe was given to her sons, who each own their own store -- Sunshine Food Store and Ralph’s Handi Mart, which has created a friendly family feud.
“They have the exact same recipe,” says Walid Saleh. “The exact same chicken, the exact same fryers, the whole nine yards. It is the same, but ours is clearly better.”
“We make the best chicken. Straight up”, counters Max Saleh.
But Workun says chicken lovers in Edmonton are the ones who really come out on top, with tasty fried chicken never being more convenient.
“I just went in to get lottery tickets, but I came out a winner.”