Watermelon Sugar Cookies

Original Recipe HERE

Can you tell which one she decorated?

We made these on a whim after seeing their picture in a blog sidebar.  We had all the ingredients, and it seemed like something *N* would enjoy doing because don't all kids like food-that-looks-like-something-it's-not?  They were somewhat time-consuming, but they can be broken up into steps throughout the day: 1) make dough, 2) make cookies, 3) glaze cookies.  The two difficulties I had were that rolling out the dough between two sheets of parchment made it slide all over the counter.  Perhaps there's a better method, but I didn't bother figuring it out - just held the paper steady with one hand and awkwardly used the roller with the other.  Also, I worked as fast as I could when cutting out shapes and applying chocolate chips, but the dough still got somewhat soft and a little tricky to transfer because I didn't put the cookies on the baking sheets until after the chips were on.

I used the sugar cookie recipe listed in the original recipe, I'd think any other could be substituted.  I doubt it's possible to make healthy sugar cookies, but the amount of butter and sugar in these things had me on the phone to pre-arrange a triple bypass for next week.  Still, they were a nice treat and a fun "novelty food" to bring to a summer party.  Husband brought most of them to work, and he emailed me to tell me comments included, "These are very good," "Bakery quality!," and "Can I have another?" The recipe yielded approximately 36 cookies.

Ingredients for Cookies
3 3/4 cups all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 cup cold unsalted butter, cut into 1/2 Tablespoon slices
1 1/2 cups granulated sugar
2 eggs
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
8 drops red food coloring
1 cup miniature semi-sweet morsels

Ingredients for Glaze
1 1/2 cups powdered sugar, sifted
2 1/2 Tablespoons milk
15-20 drops green food coloring

1) In medium bowl, whisk together flour, baking powder, and salt. Set aside.
2) Add butter slices, sugar, eggs, vanilla, and red food coloring to mixing bowl. Beat on medium speed until incorporated (don't be concerned if there are small lumps of butter still visible).
3) Turn mixer to low and gradually add flour mixture. Mix until incorporated and no traces of flour are left. Gather all dough together using a sturdy rubber spatula.
4) Remove dough from bowl and separate into two batches. Place one batch between 2 sheets of parchment paper and roll out to 1/4" thick. Repeat with other batch. Chill in refrigerator for at least 2 hours.
5) Preheat oven to 400 degrees F and have baking sheets (lined with silicon baking mat or parchment) ready.
6) Remove one batch of rolled dough from refrigerator. Cut out circles with cookie cutter or biscuit cutter, then cut each circle in half.
7) Place halves on baking sheet about 1" apart.  Gently press chips into each half to resemble seeds.
8) Bake 6-8 minutes, checking after 6.  Cookies should be slightly puffed but not browned at all on edges.  Remove from oven and allow to cool on baking sheet for 5 minutes.  Transfer to cooling rack to cool completely.
* For each batch of dough, after cutting out the circles, gather the scraps together and reroll them, place back in the refrigerator. Repeat until all dough has been used. [I didn't put dough back in the fridge because I needed to get them all done quickly]
9) In small bowl, whisk together all ingredients to form glaze.  Add drops of milk to thin glaze if too thick.
10) Cover counter with wax paper and place cooling racks over paper to catch drips. Roll round end of each cookie in glaze, allow excess to drip off into bowl, and place on cooling rack.  Allow glaze to set before transferring.

Notes: I used a drinking cup (because our cookie cutters seem to have been misplaced since we moved) that was about 3.5" diameter to cut out the shapes.  Next time I'll use a smaller one.  Also, I used 10 drops of green food coloring - approximately, since *N* squeezed the bottle so fast I couldn't count.  The green looked vibrant enough in the bowl, but on the cookies it wasn't bright enough.  Next time I'll use more.

Kid Participation
* Whisk dry ingredients
* Crack eggs
* Roll dough
* Cut out shapes
* Apply chips (watch for grabbing handfuls of chips at once and ending up with a mess of half-melted chips in each palm)

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