It’s the time of year when those colorful, rectangular boxes start popping up. Yes, it’s Girl Scout Cookie season. It’s almost a civic duty to buy at least two boxes of the cookies. If you find yourself with more boxes than you can eat in a reasonable amount of time, take heart.

It’s the time of year when those colorful, rectangular boxes start popping up. Yes, it’s Girl Scout Cookie season. It’s almost a civic duty to buy at least two boxes of the cookies.

If you find yourself with more boxes than you can eat in a reasonable amount of time, take heart. Stored unopened in the freezer, every type of cookie, from caramel and coconut-laced Samoas to Thin Mint, will keep up to 12 months. To protect the boxes from moisture, place one or two boxes in a gallon-size freezer bag before storing.

So what do you do with all those cookies?

Turn back to the freezer. The endless flavors of ice cream on the market provide a base for a whole range of frozen treats. For a simple dessert, crumble your favorite cookie over any flavor of ice cream. The flavor combinations are limitless. Try Shortbreads and strawberry ice cream for a strawberry shortcake-flavored treat, or for a grown-up dessert try Thin Mints and coffee ice cream drizzled with Bailey’s Irish Cream.

You can also make a pie crust from cookie crumbs. Start with a ratio of 1 1/3 cups crushed cookies and 5 tablespoons melted butter.  Pat the mixture into an 8 or 9-inch pie plate and freeze until firm. Fill the crust with your favorite ice cream and finish with your favorite ice cream toppings. Again, the flavor combinations are limitless. For a touch of the tropics, try a Samoas crust filled with banana ice cream (Ben & Jerry’s Chunky Monkey, with fudge chunks and walnuts, comes to mind) and drizzled with caramel topping. You can also fill the cookie crust with your favorite cream or cheesecake filling.

If you own an ice cream maker, consider yourself blessed. Just crumble some of your favorite cookies into the ice cream base before freezing. No need to buy the Breyers Thin Mint or Samoas Ice Cream that has been on the market for the past few years.

The Web site for ABC/Interbake Foods, one of the two licensed Girl Scout Cookie bakers — the other is Little Brownie Bakers — has a recipe for Thin Mint ice cream that uses an unusual ingredient, white chocolate pudding mix.

Homemade Thin Mint Ice Cream

Courtesy of ABC/Interstate Foods (www.abcsmartcookies.com/cookies_recipes.asp)

3 quarts whole milk
2 cans sweetened condensed milk
1 cup sugar
1 pkg. white chocolate instant pudding
3/4 tube Thin Mints, crushed

Mix all ingredients. Process in an ice cream maker following the manufacturer’s directions. Makes 3 quarts.

Once you tire of cookies and ice cream, look to brownie mix. Any of the chocolate-based Girl Scout Cookies can be broken up and folded into brownie batter. Peanut Butter Patties, with their creamy centers, work especially well in brownie batter. Add a few peanut butter chips for an even more indulgent brownie.

If you’re feeling really adventurous and want to try adding Girl Scout Cookies to a main dish, try a Thai peanut chicken recipe made with Peanut Butter Sandwich cookies. While it may seem odd, the cookies actually enhance the sweet undertones in this Asian dish. 

Peanut Thai Chicken

Courtesy of Little Brownie Bakers (www.littlebrownie.com/cookies/cookies_recipes.html)

8 crushed Peanut Butter Sandwich cookies
2 pounds boneless, skinless chicken tenderloins
Wood skewers
Teriyaki glaze
Thai Peanut Sauce
 
Grill chicken tenderloins on wood skewers, brushing occasionally with Teriyaki glaze. Prepare Pad Thai noodles according to directions on box. Serve chicken tenderloins with 4 crushed cookies sprinkled on top. Mix remaining cookie crumbs with peanut sauce. Serve peanut sauce poured over chicken and noodles, or as a dipping sauce.  Serves four.

If you want to try some of these recipes—or enjoy Girl Scouts Cookies the way they are really meant to be eaten, right out of the box—it’s not too late to stock up. According to Amy Hutcherson, community development and program delivery coordinator for Girl Scouts of Illinois Macomb Satellite Office, you can order cookies until April 10 by calling her office at 309-837-3386. You can also contact your local Girl Scout troop to see if they have any extra boxes.

Got a recipe that you would like to see published? Send it to lainie@MacombJournal.com.

 

Girl Scout Cookie facts

- The first national Girl Scout Cookie sale was held in 1936.

- Each season, Girl Scouts sell almost 200 million packages of cookies.

- For every box of Girl Scout Cookies bought, more than two-thirds of the purchase price stays in the troop's local community.

- The top three best-selling cookies are Thin Mints, Caramel DeLites (Samoas) and Peanut Butter Patties (Tagalongs).

- There are two licensed Girl Scout Cookie suppliers, Little Brownie Bakers and ABC/Interstate Foods. The name of your Girl Scout Cookie depends on who supplies cookies to your local troop. ABC/Interstate Foods makes Peanut Butter Patties, which are called Tagalongs by Little Brownie Bakers. Thin Mints is the only cookie name shared by both suppliers.