Maryland’s Cookie – The Berger Cookie
Berger cookies are a Maryland favorite! This copycat Berger Cookie recipe makes a soft, cake-like cookie topped with a mound of rich fudge frosting.
I’m really excited because today is the day I get to share one of my favorite cookies of all time with you! This month Melinda and I got to team up with Bob’s Red Mill as a part of their United States of Cookies. That’s right, 50 states, 50 bloggers, 50 cookies, with one goal, to celebrate the diversity of the U.S.A. in cookie form! Melinda and I are so proud to be representing Maryland, and if you have ever lived in Maryland you know that Berger Cookies are pretty much our state cookie. These delicious cookies are soft and cake-like with a huge mound of creamy, fudge-y, chocolate icing on top.
Recently I was talking with someone who just moved to Maryland and she was asking a group of us to tell her some things that are unique to Maryland. The first thing out of every single person’s mouth was Berger Cookies! Berger cookies started back in 1835 when Henry Berger came over from Germany and opened up a bakery in East Baltimore. The bakery has changed hands since then but it is still a Maryland institution and the amazing Berger cookies they produce are a must-have! These and a bag of Old Bay potato chips are the first thing that goes into any care package for a homesick Marylander that has moved out of state.
Good cookies start with good flour so to make these tasty cookies I used Bob’s Red Mill Organic Unbleached All Purpose White Flour. This high protein flour is used by professional bakers and produces light, airy baked goods as well as high, well-textured loaves of bread, and it isn’t enriched with any additives. I know a lot of people have friends and family with gluten allergies and if that is the case Bob’s Red Mill also makes Gluten Free 1-to-1 Baking Flour that is perfectly formulated for baked goods with terrific taste and texture – no additional specialty ingredients or custom recipes required! We’ve even got a COUPON for Bob’s Red Mill products for you. Holiday baking just got that much easier!
For the cookie dough the flour is mixed with butter, vanilla, baking powder, sugar, milk and an egg. The sticky dough is then scooped into tablespoon size balls and placed on to a parchment paper (or silicone mat) lined baking sheet. The dough is then flattened slightly. I used the bottom of my measuring cup and sprayed it with a bit of non-stick spray so the dough wouldn’t stick to it. Then I gently pressed down until each cookie spread out to a 1 1/2-inch circle. I did have to reapply the spray every few cookies so keep it handy. Once they were all flattened I popped them in the oven and baked them at 400 degrees F for 8 minutes. Depending on your oven it might take more or less time but you’re going to know they are done when the bottom is a slightly mottled golden brown. These cookies are soft and cake-like so you really want to watch them and make sure they aren’t over baked.
While your baked cookies cool you can make the icing. Those little cookies are good but, in my opinion, the icing is really want makes a Berger cookie. It’s a rich, thick ganache that is almost like fudge spread over the top of the cookie. When I say thick I mean thick. The ratio of chocolate icing to cookie should be 1:1. See! I told you these cookies are amazing! To get that much icing you start by dipping the bottom of the cookie into it. You read that right, finished Berger cookies have a distinctive rounded bottom and that’s because you turn the cookie upside down when icing and dip the flat side. After each cookie has been dipped you go back with a knife or a small icing spatula, scoop up more frosting and spread it on each cookie. Don’t freak out that it looks like too much chocolate…never mind I know you’d never think that! 😉 Just an FYI, you might have to let the icing cool slightly to thicken up a little. You don’t want it running off the edges of your cookies. Don’t bother trying to get the chocolate smooth. Berger cookies have a very rustic look so the fudge-y icing should have some texture to it.
This copycat recipe for classic Maryland Berger cookies turned out so good. The icing isn’t exactly the same as Berger’s but it’s still amazing and it got two thumbs up from everyone in my house!
Make your own Berger cookies:
- 1/3 cup Butter
- 1 teaspoon Vanilla extract
- 1 teaspoon Baking powder
- 1/2 cup Sugar
- 1 Large egg
- 1 1/2 cups Bob’s Red Mill Organic Unbleached All Purpose White Flour
- 1/3 cup Milk
- 1 cup Bittersweet chocolate chips
- 1 cup Semisweet Chocolate chips
- 1 tablespoon Light corn syrup
- 1 teaspoon Vanilla extract
- 3/4 cup Heavy cream
- 1 1/2 cups Powdered sugar
- Preheat the oven to 400°F.
- Line a baking sheet with parchment paper and set to the side.
- In the bowl of your mixer beat together butter, vanilla extract, baking powder, and sugar.
- Add the egg and beat until the mixture just starts to come together.
- Slowly add the flour a ½ cup at a time alternating it with the milk.
- Scoop about a tablespoon of cookie dough and drop it on the baking sheet. Repeat this step spacing the dough about 2 inches apart.
- Lightly grease the bottom of a measuring cup and press it gently down on the dough balls, flattening them slightly so they are about 1 1/2 inches across. You will need to grease the measuring cup several times during the process so the dough doesn’t stick to it. I just used a little non-stick spray.
- Bake the cookies for 8-10 minutes. This cookies are cake-like so you don’t want the bottoms getting fully brown. They are done when the bottom is a mottled brown.
- Once cookies are done remove them from the oven and place them on a cooling rack.
- Make the frosting by placing the two types of chocolate chips in a bowl.
- In a separate, microwave safe bowl, add the heavy cream and microwave it for 30 seconds at a time until it begins to boil.
- Pour the boiling milk over the chocolate chips and let it sit.
- Add the light corn syrup to the chocolate and stir until it is smooth.
- Stir in the powdered sugar and let them mixture sit for 5 minutes to cool slightly.
- Take each cookie and turn it over, dipping the flat bottom in the chocolate icing.
- Let the chocolate mixture continue to cool and then using a knife scoop up more chocolate and spread it over each cookie. If you can see swirls in the icing after you spread it over the cookie then it is the right consistency. In the end the chocolate should be about the same thickness as the cookie.
- Let the chocolate set and then store in an airtight container until ready to serve.
That’s it. Maryland’s famous Berger cookie. Surprise your friends and family with them this holiday season, and make sure you go check out the other 49 state cookies in the United States of Cookies. You’re going to love them!
I was selected for this opportunity as a member of Clever and the content and opinions expressed here are all my own.