PHOTO BY David Williams
The other day, my friend Lucy threw a party. She’s an epic host, and when I walked into her bustling living room, I spotted an overflowing cheese and charcuterie board. But then my eyes zeroed in on something else.
RUFFLES AND FRENCH ONION DIP.
My heart skipped a beat. The combo was a beloved staple of my Midwest childhood, but then I moved to New York after college and never really saw it again. But here it was, in all its glory. I headed right over to take a bite.
“We always make a double batch,” Lucy told me this morning. “We put multiple bowls around the room so we don’t have a traffic problem.”
All you have to do, of course, is a) mix Lipton’s Onion Soup & Dip Mix into a bowl of sour cream; and 2) open a bag of Ruffles. It’s cheap and old-school and wildly crowd-pleasing.
Here are Lucy’s pro tips:
* You cannot use light sour cream, and you need a rigid potato chip to bear the weight of the dip. It’s the same as how different pasta shapes hold sauce better.
* You know what’s also good? Salt and pepper ruffled chips. That’s zhuzhes them up a little.
* We put out carrot and celery sticks, too, but people only go for those when we’re down to the crumbs of the chips.
* Pigs in blankets are the other thing where it doesn’t matter what other fancy food you put out. But French onion dip still goes the most quickly.
Since that party, I’ve spotted the combo again: at a kid’s birthday and then at an Oscars viewing party. Is the snack coming back on the scene? Or did it never really leave?
Would you try it? Or maybe you have it all the time?! The funny thing is, I mentioned Ruffles with onion dip on a CoJ team call, and no one knew what I was talking about. (“Do you mean ranch?” they asked.) I felt like the guy in the movie Yesterday, where nobody’s heard of The Beatles.
P.S. Three strategic starters for a dinner party, and don’t forget about tater tots!
(Photos and gif by David Williams for Cup of Jo.)