A sour cream dip all the same, but Korean-inflected and with nuance. Instead of Lipton onion soup mix, that deliciously desiccated "maraca-shake of onions rattling in a paper packet," as Amy Thielen once called it, mine calls for a couple packets of those roasted seaweed snacks that I grew up eating, and that have been in vogue among the Trader Joe's generation as of late. It's the secret ingredient in much of my cooking, gives everything a savory note that hits all the pleasure centers of the brain. This dip is salty, creamy, and umami-rich, makes you want to eat vegetables (which I don't do very often). —Eric Kim
Eric Kim was the Table for One columnist at Food52. He is currently working on his first cookbook, KOREAN AMERICAN, to be published by Clarkson Potter in 2022. His favorite writers are William Faulkner, John Steinbeck, and Ernest Hemingway, but his hero is Nigella Lawson. You can find his bylines at The New York Times, where he works now as a writer. Follow him on Twitter and Instagram at @ericjoonho.