The original Berger Cookies are the pride of Baltimore. They are B-I-G and need to be stored flat, in a single layer.
Make Ahead: Frosted cookies can be stored in a single layer in an airtight tin for 2 days. Wrap the frosted cookies individually in plastic wrap for up to 1 week (if you don't mind their tops getting a bit mashed).
Servings: 16 - 24 cookies
- For the cookies
- 8 ounces (2 sticks) unsalted butter, at room temperature
- 1 1/2 teaspoons salt
- 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
- 1 tablespoon baking powder
- 1 1/2 cups sugar
- 3 large eggs
- 4 1/2 cups flour
- 1 cup whole or 2 percent milk
- For the frosting
- 3 1/2 cups (21 ounces) semisweet chocolate chips
- 4 ounces unsweetened chocolate, coarsely chopped
- 2 tablespoons light corn syrup
- 4 tablespoons (1/2 stick) chilled unsalted butter
- 1 1/2 cups heavy cream
For the cookies: Preheat the oven to 400 degrees. Line 2 baking sheets with parchment paper.
Place the butter in the bowl of a stand mixer or hand-held electric mixer. Beat on medium-high speed for about 3 minutes, until fluffy. Stop and scrape the bowl down once, or as needed.
Add the salt, vanilla extract and baking powder; beat on medium speed to incorporate, then add the sugar and beat to incorporate. Add the eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition.
Reduce the speed to low (or do the following step by hand); add the flour to the bowl alternately with the milk, beginning and ending with the flour.
Use an ice cream scoop to drop 6 mounds of dough on each baking sheet, spacing the mounds at least 2 inches apart. If you use a standard ice cream scoop, the yield will be 16 cookies. For a yield of 24 cookies, use a slightly smaller scoop, usually sold for the purpose of scooping muffins and dough.
Bake one sheet at a time for 11 minutes, or until the cookies are puffed and there is just barely a golden edge showing from the bottom, but not colored on top. (These cookies are meant to be soft and caky, so don't overbake them.) Cool on the baking sheet for 5 minutes, then transfer to a wire rack to cool completely. Repeat to use all the dough.
To make the frosting: Combine the chocolate chips, unsweetened chocolate, corn syrup, butter and cream into a large microwave-safe bowl. Heat the mixture on HIGH for 1 1/2 minutes, then stir to combine. Return the bowl to the microwave; microwave on HIGH for 1 1/2 minutes, or until the mixture can be whisked together so it is smooth. Do not overheat the mixture or it may scorch. Let cool to room temperature; this may take a few hours.
When the chocolate mixture has cooled, transfer it to the bowl of a stand mixer or use a hand-held electric mixer to beat it on low speed for 1 minute, or until the color lightens and thickens a little to form a frosting. (If you prefer a thinner coat, skip this step of whipping air into the frosting.)
Spread the top of each cookie with a generous 3 tablespoons of the frosting (about 1 1/2 ounces), leaving a margin around the edges. If you are making these in cool weather, the frosting will be firm enough to set almost immediately. In warmer weather, you may need to allow the cookies to set for about 20 minutes before storing.
Store in a single layer in an airtight tin for 2 days, or wrap them in plastic wrap for up to 1 week.
Adapted from a recipe (Baltimore's Finest) at www.kingarthurflour.com.
Tested by Leigh Lambert.
E-mail questions to the Food Section at firstname.lastname@example.org.