Mr. E & me sitting in a tree. . .


These cookies are inspired by my sister and her hubby who carve their initials in a tree wherever they live. {Insert "aww..." here.}

If you are ever on an Army base in Hawaii, and see a tree with a M + M carved on it, that's them. ;)

Even if you don't make the trees, the little initial hearts are about the easiest Valentine cookies EVER!  Just outline, flood and, the next day, use a food coloring pen to write on initials.  Easy Peasy.
The make the trees you'll need:
Cut out cookies using a circle cutter and with a knife, cut a thin rectangle.  Smoosh (technical term) together before baking to make a tree shape.

Once the cookies have cooled, outline the top of the tree and the trunk of the tree using #2 tips.  Pipe a heart in the center of the trunk. (The red icing won't be used until the next day, cover with plastic wrap, pressing onto the icing, and store in the fridge.)

Reserve some piping consistency green icing. Thin the brown and remaining green icing with water, a teaspoon at a time, stirring until it reaches the consistency of thick syrup.  Cover with a damp dish towel and set aside.

After several minutes, stir the icings gently with a rubber spatula to pop and air bubbles that have risen to the surface.  Transfer to squeeze bottles.

Flood the tree top with the thinned green icing and the tree trunk in brown.  Use a toothpick to guide into edges and pop air bubbles.

Wait at least one hour, then with the #2 tip, pipe grass on the bottom of the trunk.  Let dry overnight.

With a fan brush and Chocolate Brown food coloring thinned with water, add the wood grain.  To make the wood grain, I used a technique I learned from Renee. You can see her wood grain on cookies video on University of Cookie (she's so good).

Thin the red icing with water, as described above and fill in the heart.

Let dry overnight.

The next day, use the food coloring pens to write on initials.

Have you ever carved your initials in a tree?  I'm thinking Mr. E & I need to.
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