Watermelon Cookies!

updated 09/08/2010 AT 01:00 AM EDT

originally published 09/08/2010 AT 01:00 AM EDT

Dessert of the Month

Watermelon is a staple of summer barbecues, but these easy-to-bake cookies will put a fresh spin on that dessert favorite. The secret? A simple sugar-cookie dough that's been dotted with miniature chocolate chip "seeds" and then dipped in a colored glaze. No, the cookies don't actually taste like watermelon, but serve them alongside a watermelon-flavored granita or sorbet, and you're bound to give guests a dessert to remember.

WATERMELON COOKIES

Makes: 3 dozen

Hands-on time: 50 min.

Total time: 4 hrs., 10 min.

1/3 cup butter, softened

1/3 cup shortening

¾ cup sugar

1 large egg

1 tbsp. milk

1 tsp. vanilla extract

2 cups all-purpose flour

1½ tsp. baking powder

½ tsp. salt

Red paste food coloring

1/3 cup semisweet chocolate minimorsels

1½ cups powdered sugar, sifted

1½ to 2 tbsp. water

Green paste food coloring

1. Beat butter and shortening in a large mixing bowl at medium speed with an electric mixer until creamy. Gradually add sugar, beating well. Add egg, milk and vanilla, mixing until blended.

2. Combine flour, baking powder and salt; gradually add to butter mixture. Add a small amount of red food coloring to dough to color as desired. Beat on low speed until blended. Shape dough into a ball; cover and chill at least 3 hours.

3. Preheat oven to 375°.

4. Divide dough in half; store one portion in refrigerator. Roll remaining portion to ¼-in. thickness on a lightly floured surface. Cut dough with a 3-in. round cookie cutter; cut each circle in half. Place on parchment-lined baking sheets. Press several chocolate minimorsels into each cookie. Repeat with remaining dough.

5. Bake for 8 to 10 minutes (do not brown). Remove to wire racks to cool.

6. In a small bowl, whisk together powdered sugar and enough water to form a glaze; add a small amount of green food coloring. Dip round edge of each cookie in green glaze, and place on a wire rack until frosting is firm.

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