Molly Yeh made a popcorn salad with mayonnaise in a video on the Food Network Facebook page and social media went bonkers.
The food blogger called it's one of those classic midwestern dishes that you would often find in a church basement pot luck," which startled quite a few people who have attended church basement potlucks. As commenter Cassie Marie put it, "Am I the only one who has lived their entire life in the mid-west and have never seen a popcorn salad?" Some people reacted to the idea of folding popcorn into a mayonnaise-based salad that also features carrots, snap peas, and celery with unflagging positivity. Penny Hafner commented, "I know it sounds weird but it's so yummy. Ya have to try it just once".
It’s true that putting mayonnaise on food transforms it into a salad in the Midwest. And popcorn salad recipes predate Yeh’s video, including one from the 1920s that involved topping a banana half with mayo and popcorn.
Back in 1994, a community cookbook in North Dakota published a popcorn salad recipe, and other versions, one a century old, are out there.
BY THE WAY: Yeh's recipe has currently earned only 2.5 stars.
Popcorn salad recipe, via The Food Network
1/3 cup popcorn kernels
Vegetable oil, as needed for popping
White Cheddar popcorn seasoning, for the popcorn
1/2 cup mayonnaise
1/4 cup sour cream
2 tablespoons cider vinegar
1 tablespoon sugar
2 teaspoons Dijon mustard
1 shallot, thinly sliced
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
2 cups sugar snap peas, strings removed, cut crosswise into thirds
1 cup shredded carrot
1 cup chopped celery plus 1/2 cup tender inner celery leaves
1 bunch watercress, trimmed and torn into bite-size pieces