Molly Yeh’s known for putting unexpected ingredients in a salad. Just look at her popcorn salad. The next Girl Meets Farm salad that certainly has the potential to go viral is her cookie salad. Although this time, there are no greens — or popcorn — involved.
Molly Yeh makes homemade shortbread cookies for her cookie salad
Yeh’s cookie salad, officially named Sweet Cookie Salad with Homemade Cookies and Mandarins, begins with shortbread. The Food Network star makes the dough in a standing mixer before putting it in the fridge to chill. Then she gets started on rolling the dough.
“It’s always a little firm when it comes out of the refrigerator, but it’s a good arm workout,” Yeh said before using a biscuit cutter to stamp out circles of dough.
Then she takes it a step further, punching a small circle in the center “to make them look like storebought chocolate stripe cookies.”
Next, Yeh puts the shortbread cookies in the oven until golden brown. When they’re done cooking and cooled, she pipes chocolate stripes on top.
“I know that when you find them in the store, they have chocolate on the bottom and stripes on the top. I think that putting the chocolate on the bottom is a little fussy, so I just pipe thick stripes of chocolate on the top,” she explained.
Pudding and fruit are other elements of the Molly Yeh cookie salad
The cookie salad continues with homemade pudding and mandarin oranges. The Home Is Where the Eggs Are author puts flour, sugar, and salt in a pan on the stove and whisks it together with egg yolks.
“It’s important to do all of this before I turn the heat on my stove because once the egg yolks get in there, they’ll cook pretty quickly,” Yeh explained. “So I want to whisk everything together and make it nice and smooth before we add our heat.
“Then once we do get our heat on, I’m going to continue whisking constantly so that we don’t end up with scrambled eggs at the bottom of our pot,” she added.
When the whisk is “leaving a trail behind,” she turns off the heat and adds vanilla and almond extract. Next, she covers the pudding with plastic wrap, making sure it’s touching the top.
The reason? “So that as the pudding cools, it doesn’t develop that weird skin on top of it,” Yeh said.
Yeh folds in whipped cream when the pudding’s cooled. Then she starts assembling the salad. She crushes shortbread cookies, reserving some for decoration, and folds them into the pudding. Then in goes some drained mandarin oranges. Again, Yeh puts some aside for decoration.
Finally, she smiths out the top of the pudding and decorates the top with the remaining cookies and mandarin oranges. Yeh’s last step is some optional sprinkles to “make it a party.”
The ‘Girl Meets Farm’ salad has 4.5 stars
Not unlike the popcorn salad, Yeh’s cookie salad is divisive among reviews. Some like it while others aren’t fans. But, overall, the recipe averages 4.5 stars on Food Network’s website.
“When I heard about this ‘cookie salad’ from Molly, I actually loved the idea of it and thought this had to be delicious,” one reviewer said. “The cream part is essentially diplomat cream or bavarian cream, which I absolutely adore, and how can this not be delicious???”
They also loved the addition of almond extract, calling it a “nice touch.”
Another reviewer skipped making Yeh’s chicken hotdish recipe she prepared in the same episode and had the “fabulous” cookie salad for dinner. It’s “sweet but not too sweet,” they said.
“I got a kick out of this salad,” a reviewer wrote before calling it “fun and funny in a cool way.”
Another reviewer made Yeh’s cookie salad with a slight change to the original recipe. They added cocoa powder to the pudding and whipped cream because of their love for the “chocolate/orange flavor combo.”
Find the full recipe on Food Network.