Cake Decorating 101: Reveal Cake
Last week we took a look at decorating cakes on the inside by making a Zebra Cake, so I thought I would continue that theme by showing you how to make a reveal cake for a baby shower. Sharing with friends and family the gender of the soon-to-come baby has become more than just announcing it through words; many couples have shared this good news by cutting into a cake colored blue or pink on the inside.
Photos by Molly Dunn It's a boy!
The majority of reveal cakes are decorated in white frosting on the outside and the cake itself is dyed pink or blue. So, once you slice into the cake, the color (and gender) is "revealed." But, to make things a lot more exciting, this reveal cake is filled with blue or pink candies that spill out of the cake once you pull the first slice away.
While this type of cake is more popular at baby showers, you can most certainly decorate it and fill it like you would a piñata. Decorate the frosting like the outside of a piñata, giving texture to the frosting so it looks just like the paper on the outside of a pinata, and fill with a variety of brightly colored candies. It's perfect for a child's birthday party.
At first when I saw this cake, I thought the chocolate and candies were baked into the cake, leading me to question how the candies and chocolates didn't melt. But with a little more research, I realized the candies were sealed into the cake by cutting out a hole in the center and layering the sections with frosting. Don't worry, this cake has four layers so you won't lose that much cake by cutting out a hole in the center.
Use a variety of different candies to fill the cake.
There are several options when choosing which cake to bake. You can either bake an all-white cake or a chocolate cake to sharply contrast the colored candies, or you can dye the cake batter pink or blue to match the candies. I chose to go with a white cake decorated with a fluffy vanilla frosting and blue candies.
Bake four layers of the cake in nine-inch round cake pans. Let the cakes cool just as you learned in the first installation of the Cake Decorating 101 series, "Baking the Perfect Cake". Then make the frosting so it can have enough time to chill. Whip together a fluffy white frosting, like a seven-minute vanilla frosting, by using egg whites, sugar, salt, cream of tartar, vanilla extract and water.
Cut a four-inch circle out of two cake layers to create the well for the candies.
While the cakes are cooling, mix together several different types of blue or pink candies. You can mix and match with jelly beans, M&M candies, York Peppermint Pattie pieces or Almond Joy pieces (just the blue ones). You can even add a variety of blue or pink sprinkles.
As soon as the cakes are baked and have cooled completely, you can start preparing each layer. The base will be a whole cake, so place one layer on a plate, then frost the top with about 1/2 inch of frosting. Then cut out a four-inch round circle from the middle of two of the cake layers. Stack one of those layers on top of the base and frost the top. Avoid getting frosting into the cut-out center of the cake. Then repeat with the next layer and frost the top of it.
Fill the hole with two cups of candy.
Now that you have a well in the middle of the cake, you can fill that hole with two cups of blue- or pink-colored candies. Once the candies reach the top of the cake, place the final layer (nothing cut out) on top and then frost the outside of the cake with the remaining frosting.
For a baby shower cake, you can write phrases on top like "He or She? Open to See!" or "Twinkle Twinkle Little Star, How We Wonder What You Are," or simply put blue and pink fondant question marks on top. You can just as easily keep it frosted white and let the candies on the inside be the star of the cake.
As soon as you cut into the cake, the candies will come spilling out, revealing the gender of the baby.
Check out the previous installments of the Cake Decorating 101 series: