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Watch: this magical "raindrop cake” is really just a lying blob of Jell-O

Raindrop Cake Looks Awesome And Is Almost Zero Calories

This raindrop cake is making its U.S. debut.

Posted by The Huffington Post on Thursday, March 31, 2016
Aja Romano writes about pop culture, media, and ethics. Before joining Vox in 2016, they were a staff reporter at the Daily Dot. A 2019 fellow of the National Critics Institute, they’re considered an authority on fandom, the internet, and the culture wars.

Is cake a form of Jell-O? Is Jell-O a form of cake?

This is the question a confused internet has been asking ever since a viral video from the Huffington Post introduced the concept of "raindrop cake" to confused US viewers on Thursday.

And no, this isn't an April Fools' prank. The transparent, wobbly confection reportedly dissolves into a pool of liquid and melts away if not eaten promptly.

But what exactly is it?

hand jiggles a mound of mizu shingen mochi.
A mound of mizu shingen mochi.
Mosogourmet (YouTube)

You might be thinking, "That's clearly a lump of Jell-O." But not so fast. The raindrop cake, or mizu shingen mochi, is supposedly a variant of rice cake, originally made with pristine water from the Japanese Alps and solidified using granulated sugar, agar (a jelly like substance), and soybean powder.

So … wouldn't a recipe involving a jelly-like substance make this not-actually-a-rice-cake kind of like Jell-O? No, no, my friend, clearly it's a jelly cake. The raindrop cake originally made quite a splash (pun possibly intended) when it debuted in Japan in 2014. Japanese foodies hailed its gorgeous Zen aesthetic and its nearly calorie-free, vegan makeup.

But when HuffPo shared its video (embedded at the top of this page) announcing the food's upcoming arrival in New York this weekend, Americans were less than impressed. Most of the comments on the video, which currently has more than 3 million views, are remarking on its consistency and arguing that the cake is a lie.

"This is called clear jello Huffpost," wrote one offended Facebook user. "This is SO NOT exciting."

The most upvoted post thus far is simply a comparison of the recipes of cake and Jell-O. (Spoiler alert: One of them is more like shingen mochi than the other.)

And HuffPo didn't fare much better on Tumblr:

Apparently you can lead a horde of internet citizens to a raindrop cake, but you can't make them … drink.

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