Anne & Gilbert

One of my all time favorite books is Anne of Green Gables. I’ve read it at least 4 times and have the rest of the entire series. It’s such a cute and lovable book that I find can relate to most little girls who have very creative imaginations, a kindred spirit best friend, and a boy that calls you “carrots” or just teases you. This book series is adventurous and romantic in so many different ways and I can never seem to get enough of it.


I’m also a really big fan of the 3 part movie series featuring Megan Follows and Jonathan Crombie. I was so sad about hearing about Jonathan Crombie’s death earlier this year. I loved him as Gilbert in the movies with his adorable face and how he wouldn’t give up on loving Anne. If only every guy would act that way by showing a girl how much they care about you and never giving up on you. A girl can dream right? I just hope I can find my own Gilbert Blythe in the future. This article by Purple Ink Studios says a lot about why a girl is looking for a Gilbert. It’s so sweet and all so true with every word on how Gilbert is every girls ideal man. And I love it so much!

Now I’ve been wanting to do an Anne of Green Gables cake for the longest time but I could never find any images or drawings of Anne or Gil or any of the other amazing characters! I was really devastated about it, truly I was. But then there was this version of the book and I could not help myself. As soon as I saw this book I had this idea with every single detail down to the flavor of the cake in my head. 

The flavor of the cake is an apple cinnamon cake with vanilla buttercream. I didn’t want to use cream cheese mainly because it’s more soft and I wanted to cover the cake in fondant to do the design I wanted. For the design I placed Gilbert and Anne on top, painted some watercolor flowers all over the cake but leaving a little space for the most perfect quote~
“There would never be anyone for me but you.” 
                                          ~ Gilbert Blythe

This quote really just sums up the love that Gilbert had for Anne in the sweetest little sentence that any girl would love to hear. Now when I was searching for my decorating inspiration I kept coming across pins and articles saying “Anne of Green Gables apple cake recipe”. So I decided to go that route but I didn’t do any of the recipes that I came across. Instead I wanted to do one of my favorites that I found a few years ago and it’s super delicious and went just perfectly with what I wanted to do.

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Apple Spice Cake (adapted from Alpineberry Blog)
Makes a 3 layer 6-inch cake

Cake
2 1/4 all purpose flour
2 1/4 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp ground cinnamon

1/4 tsp cloves
1/2 tsp ginger
1/4 tsp nutmeg
1/4 tsp salt
9 ounces (2 sticks plus 2 tbsp) unsalted butter, softened at room temp
1 1/2 cups granulated sugar
4 large eggs
1/2 tsp pure vanilla extract
1/2 tsp finely grated lemon or orange zest
1 cup (8 fluid ounces) whole milk


1/2 cup brown sugar
1 tsp cinnamon

Preheat oven to 325F. Grease and line 3 6-inch pans. 
Cream the sugar and butter together in the bowl of an electric mixer, about 4 minutes. Gradually add the eggs. In a separate bowl combine the flour, spices, salt, and baking powder. Combine the milk and the vanilla. Gradually add the flour mixture into the batter and mix until well combined. Gradually add the milk and vanilla mixture.

In a small bowl combine the brown sugar and cinnamon.

Take an ice cream scoop (if you have one) and do 4 scoops into each pan and spread around. Sprinkle a generous amount of the brown sugar mixture into each pan, making sure to leave a small space un-sprinkled by the side of the pans. Then add another 4 scoops of batter and spread around. Bake the cakes for about 35-40 minutes or until a toothpick comes out clean.



Apple Filling
1/3 cup sugar
2 apples, peeled and thinly sliced
1/2 tsp cinnamon

Place butter, sugar, cinnamon and apples in a large fry pan over low-medium heat. Let cook for about 10-15 minutes or until the sugar and butter dissolves and the apples are lightly caramelized and soft. Remove apples from pan and let cool completely.


Swiss Meringue Buttercream (via Martha Stewart)

5 egg whites
1 cup plus 2 tbsp sugar
Pinch of salt
4 sticks butter, room temp
2 tsp vanilla

Combine the egg whites, sugar, and salt in the bowl of an electric mixer and put over a pot of simmering water, making sure the water doesn’t touch the bottom of the bowl. Whisk the mixture frequently until it reaches 160*F and the sugar has dissolved.

Whip the egg white mixture in the stand of an electric mixer at medium-high speed until stiff peaks form and it cools to room temp. Reduce the speed to medium and gradually add the butter, a few tablespoons at a time. Whip until fully combined. Add the vanilla.

NOTE: Don’t worry if it looks soupy and curdled! Just keep mixing it and it will eventually come together. I promise!

Assembly
With the first 2 layers, spread a thin amount of frosting then take a piping bag filled with a small amount of the buttercream and pipe a dam around the sides. Fill with the apple filling, top with another layer of cake and repeat.

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