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The Unexpected Place Where Sohla El-Waylly Got Her Start
By Elaina Friedman
In 2020, a number of employees left Bon Appetit following a string of controversies that revealed a culture of discrimination fostered by the magazine’s former editor-in-chief, Adam Rapoport, and other Condé Nast higher-ups. One of these people was assistant food editor Sohla El-Waylly, who, following her resignation, has proven herself as a veritable encyclopedia of cooking knowledge and intuition in the world of food on YouTube.
During her recent appearance on "Late Night with Seth Meyers," El-Waylly revealed that, like so many of her contemporaries, she didn't get her start at a fancy restaurant, but cut her teeth behind the frozen yogurt machine at her local Baskin-Robbins, instead. El-Waylly's parents were franchisees at a Los Angeles outpost of the multinational ice cream chain.
She then studied at the Culinary Institute of America, spent time as a pastry chef, and worked at restaurants like Pok Pok, Momofuku, and Atera. El-Waylly, who'll be seen as a judge on the upcoming HBO series "The Big Brunch," recently announced on Instagram that she's the guest editor of the 2022 edition of the prestigious annual anthology "The Best American Food Writing."