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Too Many Cooks: Your Favorite Condiment

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You'll be hearing from the team at Food52 every week in Too Many Cooks, our group column in which we pool our answers to questions about food, cooking, life, and more. 

Condiments—the crowned jewels of cooking—add a hit of heat, a little acid, or a much-needed creamy note to breakfast, dinner, or dessert (dessert condiments are real and wonderful). What qualifies as a condiment is a little up for debate here at Food52, where hot sauce reigns supreme, sour cream holds an embarrassingly large piece of our collective heart, and there is contention surrounding runny egg yolks.

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This conversation is precisely what makes condiments, and cooking for that matter, endlessly fun. Topping your food with your favorite condiment shows personality and creativity, no matter how strange others think you are. While owning up to your favorite condiment (Frank's Red Hot Buffalo Sauce, for example) can make enemies, this is a safe space. That’s why we asked the staff at Food52:

What is your favorite can’t-live-without, buy-it-in-bulk, eat-it-on-everything condiment? 

Are you an avocado lover that can’t be stopped, or a bananas and ketchup kind of person? Tell us what condiment you couldn't live without in the comments below.

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Lauren K: If we can consider Greek yogurt to be a condiment, then that's my choice. I no longer buy it to eat as yogurt and instead buy it to put on everything. 

Allison: A dollop of Greek yogurt seems to end up on a lot of what I eat.  It has become my version of “Put an egg on it.”

Erin: I love hot sauce and I carry three kinds in my purse at all times for spicy emergencies: Frank's (yay vinegar!), A & B American Style pepper sauce (yay Food52 Shop!), and Coyote Garlic Hot Sauce (100 cloves of garlic per 60 bottles). 

Karl: I love all kinds of hot sauces, but I think Frank's wins for me, too.

More: The first step to understanding hot sauce? Understanding chiles.

Jaime B: Sriracha! But I recently had a roasted garlic hot sauce that was supposed to be akin to Sriracha, only it was way better and I finished a 5-ounce bottle by myself in a week.

Ali: Tapatio! Which I did not realize was not really available on the East Coast until I moved here. Luckily I have the best mom and she mails me some every few weeks.

Lauren L: Maple syrup: in my morning shake, in salad dressing, and on all breakfast baked goods.  

Kelsey: Yes. Maple syrup on everything

Rachel: Sometimes I make things just so that I can put sour cream on them.

Leandra: Thank goodness someone else said it first. I love sour cream and I don’t care who knows it.

Stephanie: Dudes, I eat sour cream like it is yogurt and I'm not even joking. Sour cream forever and for always. 

Hillary: This is no surprise to anyone, but I put a lot of tahini on a lot of things. Also, does avocado count as a condiment? 

Channing: Avocado on all things! Eggs, rice, salads, sandwiches, nachos, the list goes on. 

Lucy: In a former life I may have been "that girl" who asked for a side of ranch dressing for dipping fries. Please don't fire me. 

Samantha: I pledge allegiance to mayonnaise. Preferably Duke's (or homemade aioli).

Hannah W: Ketchup. On everything.

Merrill: Stonewall Kitchen's Roasted Garlic and Onion Jam—great with meat, great with cheese, just great.

Haley: Sun Valley Mustard. Any flavor. My in-law's are to blame for this one, and now even my grandmother is hooked. If I had to pick a favorite, it's the Chardonnay, but this feels like picking a favorite child.

Ryan M: Cleveland's Ball Park Mustard.

Brooklyn: I always have to ask for extra honey mustard, especially with fries. And Gates BBQ sauce is the best around (my Kansas City BBQ bias, of course).  

Derek: Fireman's Pommery Mustard. Done.

Do you love condiments? Do you have a favorite? Are there any that you really hate? Tell us in the comments below!

Tags: TMC, Too Many Cooks, Condiments