By Alison Bailin Batz
For six weeks each year, Girl Scouts in Arizona participate in the largest girl-led entrepreneurial program in the world: The Girl Scout Cookie Program.
This year, the cookie season for the Girl Scouts–Arizona Cactus-Pine Council runs through February 27.
As in years’ past, all the Girl Scout Cookies’ proceeds stay local to help girls fund impactful projects to benefit the community; embark on girl-led troop adventures; provide programs in STEM, the outdoors, life skills and entrepreneurship; maintain and improve four camp properties; and provide financial assistance that keeps Girl Scouting available and affordable for all girls.
To celebrate and support the local cookie season, the Girl Scout Cookie Dessert Challenge is back for its eighth year.
Through it, 20 esteemed chefs from venues throughout central and northern Arizona — including more than a dozen from the North Valley — will participate in this year’s friendly competition to create a winning dessert with one of these Girl Scout Cookies: Thin Mints, Samoas, Tagalongs, Do-Si-Dos, Trefoils or Lemon-Ups.
“The participating chefs will use their culinary prowess to re-imagine these classic Girl Scout Cookies into a delicious dessert and feature it on their menus throughout the entire month of February. A portion of the proceeds will support Girl Scouting in Arizona,” says Mary Mitchell, the council’s interim co-chief executive officer.
There is a voting component to the challenge. The public started voting for their favorite dessert on February 1 and can continue to do so through February 28 at girlscoutsaz.org/dessertchallenge. At the close of the challenge and based on qualified voting, a 2022 champion will be crowned.
This year’s Scottsdale and North Valley competitors are:
Aioli Gourmet Burgers
Dessert: PB&J Napoleon
Description: Buttery phyllo dough layered with strawberry compote, Girl Scout Do-Si-Dos crumble, and a cream made from peanut butter fluff and cream cheese, topped with strawberry coulis and fresh whipped cream.
Blue Hound Kitchen & Cocktails at Hotel Palomar
Dessert: Trifle featuring Girl Scout Do-Si-Dos
Description: Mouthwatering layers of Grand Mariner, chocolate pudding, peanut butter mousse and a Do-Si-Dos crumble crust.
Dessert: I Want Suh-Moh-Ah featuring Girl Scout Samoas
Description: This Girl Scout dessert is served one of two ways: as a scoop of specialty ice cream that combines Girl Scout Samoas, chocolate sauce and salted caramel or as a sundae, which pairs two scoops of the ice cream with Samoas crumbles, brownie crumbles, whipped cream and toasted coconut flakes.
Geordie’s at Wrigley Mansion
Dessert: Peanut butter and jelly
Description: This peanut butter mousse with a strawberry gelée center is surrounded by a Girl Scout Trefoil crumble, peanut caramel, and fresh blueberries and strawberries. It also has a cocoa glaze and is garnished with a chocolate tuile.
Dessert: Coconut-lime shortbread tart
Description: Creamy and dreamy with a little zest, this dessert starts with a coconut and Girl Scout Trefoils crust. Piled atop it is luscious lime filling and then homemade whipped cream.
Dessert: Don’t Mind If I Do
Description: Peanut butter panna cotta with Girl Scout Do-Si-Dos and oatmeal cookie crumbles. It is paired by banana cream and banana fries.
Dessert: Peanut Butter Cheesecake Duo
Description: This peanut butter cheesecake has its own mini second helping tagging along. Rich and velvety, the peanut butter cheesecake uses Girl Scout Tagalongs in the recipe and is then topped with chocolate ganache and a cookie crumble topping.
Proof Canteen at Four Seasons Resort Scottsdale Troon North
Cookie: Thin Mints
Dessert: Peppermint brownie dream
Description: This indulgent dessert starts with a fudgy double chocolate brownie. It is then layered with Girl Scout Thin Mints, peppermint crémeux — which is a smoother take on mousse — and brûléed marshmallows.
Rusconi’s American Kitchen
Dessert: Caramel Budino featuring Girl Scout Samoas
Description: A coconut and dark chocolate budino with a Samoa crust and caramel sauce, topped with crumbled Samoas and toasted coconut flakes.
Dessert: Peanut butter and bacon crème brûlée
Description: Enjoy chef Adrian De Leon’s rich and creamy peanut butter and bacon crème brûlée made with Girl Scout Do-Si-Dos. A brittle layer of melted sugar sits on top of peanut butter custard to create a mixture of texture and unlikely flavors. Topped with whipped cream, bacon bits and Do-Si-Dos, this dessert combines the sweet, the savory and the rich.
The Italian Daughter
Dessert: Limoncello cake
Description: In this dessert creation, Girl Scout Lemon-Ups take center stage. This fluffy limoncello sponge cake is filled and frosted with a generous layer of mascarpone cream with limoncello, covered entirely with Lemon-Ups crumbles, finished with a drizzle of lemon oil, and served with whipped cream.
The Mick Brasserie
Dessert: Peanut butter dacquoise
Description: Milk and cookies — with a twist. This dessert bursts with flavor, thanks to peanut chocolate praline crunch with Girl Scout Tagalongs, peanut butter mousse, chocolate ganache. The kicker? It is served with milk foam for the full effect.
ZuZu at Hotel Valley Ho
Dessert: Lady Lemon “Show Stopper” Shake
Description: This fruity treat features a blueberry milkshake base with a lemon curd drip. It is topped with Girl Scouts Lemon-Ups, a blueberry muffin, lemon ice cream bar, fresh blueberries, lemon chips, white chocolate milk crumb, a Lemon-Ups whipped cream sandwich and lemon candy.