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I am making a chocolate cake for my son's birthday. Used a boxed cake mix (with a few substitutions) for the cake itself. Going to use chocolate frosting. Had the idea to put a light coat of strawberry jelly on the top and let is soak in before frosting.

Has anyone done that before? Will it work or just make the cake soggy?

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    I know that there are plenty of recipes that call for poking holes in the cake to add a syrup before frosting ... but jelly might be a bit too ... viscous. As an alternative, you could tort the cake (slice it half, horizontally), spread the jelly there, then stack it back together. Just don't use too much or it'll cause a slip-plane and the cake layers will separate. To tort, see cooking.stackexchange.com/q/25117/67 – Joe Sep 26 '15 at 17:04
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    @Joe, if you make this an answer, we'll be able to upvote it. – Carmi Sep 27 '15 at 13:19
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Yes, you can do this and it is not unheard of in continental European-style cake recipes that tend to be on the dryer side than many American cakes. A good example of this is Sachertorte, which has a coating of apricot jam topped with a chocolate ganache.

If you have a firm-crumb cake (Sachertorte or pound cake or similar), this would work well, especially with a poured frosting or glaze. If you have a moister, crumblier cake it may (probably will) lose structure. In either case, the temperature of both the Jam and the cake matter. The cake should be fully cooled and the Jam glaze should be warm. Chill the glazed cake before attempting to frost it.

You can make a glaze by warming jam or thinning preserves slightly and cooking until it makes a thick sauce, then cooling slightly. Epicurious has a Sachertorte recipe including glaze if you want an example.

http://www.epicurious.com/recipes/food/views/apricot-glaze-231044

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