When Sohla El-Waylly joined Bon Appétit, in 2019, she quickly became a beloved character on the magazine’s popular Test Kitchen series on YouTube. Her role was that of quirky sidekick, her co-hosts relying on her wit-laced explanations when stumped by an ingredient or a technique. The show suggested Bon Appétit’s workplace was enviably fun, but this summer, amid allegations of racism and unequal pay, the magazine lost several staffers, including El-Waylly, who was not paid for her appearances on Test Kitchen. Striking out on her own, she has launched several solo projects. October’s debut, Off-Script with Sohla, is a monthly video and column series for Food52 that aims to teach the basics, the core skills needed to go rogue in the kitchen, and the confidence to riff on recipes rather than rigidly follow them. The first episode focuses on perfect chicken and rice and is full of technical wisdom, delivered with bone-dry wit. If El-Waylly was once sidelined, stepping out of the shadows only to save a colleague in a pinch, she and her expertise now lead. —C.J.F.