The Cookie that Started it All
If you give Cheryl Surana a cookie, she will build a community of cookie lovers.
Cookies have always been a constant source of comfort and love for Cheryl, the founder of Brooklyn Cookie Company. Growing up, the holidays were extra special times for Cheryl because her mother would whip up her famous “Mushroom” Meringues.
Cheryl continued her passion for making cookies with her sisters and college friends as she got older. One day, she decided to recreate her mother’s recipe for a party with the help of her sister. With a dollop of dark chocolate and cocoa powder, she transformed two creamy meringues into whimsical treats that all her friends adored. For the following weeks, Cheryl could not stop making meringues and had sold over 60 cans to her friends through word-of-mouth.
She launched her first specialty cookie company, Chocolate Chix Inc., in 1996. An employee from Neiman Marcus had gotten her hands on some of Cheryl’s meringues and could not wait to let her co-workers sample them. Soon enough, Cheryl began supplying to stores like Neiman Marcus and Bloomingdales. She could not believe that the same cookie she made in her Dallas kitchen would later become a finalist at the National Association of Specialty Food for “Outstanding Confection”.
Meringues Worth Indulging In
The economic downturn in 2002 forced Cheryl to close her business but that did not stop her from diving back in in 2014. The entrepreneurship spirit in her pushed towards a bigger project: uplifting women with cookies.
At Chocolate Chix, she worked with immigrant women who were still adjusting to life in the U.S. Though they were not fluent in English, these women and Cheryl bonded over their roles as working mothers, Spanish music, and cookie making. One day, the husband of one her employee’s stormed into the production kitchen and pulled his wife out of work. To her surprise, he blamed Cheryl for giving his wife this newfound confidence.
Inspired by this event, Cheryl founded Brooklyn Cookie Company as a venture that empowers women. When you indulge in Cheryl’s meringues, you are contributing to a community supporting women. A portion of the proceeds goes to Bottomless Closet, a non-profit dedicated to helping disadvantaged women rejoin the workforce.
These light and airy goodness also weighs heavily in the hearts of many. One of Cheryl’s customer, Lisa, personally called Cheryl to tell her that “Mushroom Meringue” was a tradition for her and her family too. Lisa’s grandmother used to send them around the holidays before she passed away ten years ago. Surprising her family with Cheryl’s cookies brought back a lot of fond memories.
For others, it is just hard to resist all-natural handcrafted dessert in general. All of Cheryl’s meringues are gluten-free, low-calorie, and Fairtrade certified. Her Just Meringue line features three bold flavors: chocolate chip, raspberry, and café latte. The Chocolate Chip meringues are infused with dark chocolate chips. Pretty in pink, the Raspberry Pizzazz boasts sweet and sour notes of organic red raspberry juice. The Aribica expresso bits in the Café Latte are sure to win you over when you need a coffee fix in the mornings.
Cheryl Surana has blazed the trail for women and meringue fanatics alike and invites you to join her, one cookie at a time.