Edible Gold Leaf

Posted on June 01, 2014 by Mary Hood | 0 Comments


Wedding Cake with Gold Leaf and Sugar Peonies

What if you could have your golden cake and eat it, too? As it turns out, you can!  Gold is edible (yes, real gold!).  In the form of gold leaf, it may adorn gourmet drink and desserts.  Gold leaf is basically gold that's been hammered into very thin sheets.

Because gold is biologically inert, it simply travels through the body leaving nary a trace (talk about calorie-free luxury!).  Unless you are allergic to gold (a rare misfortune), it’s perfectly safe to eat as long as you’re dining on gold leaf designed for consumption.  This simply means that the gold leaf should be between 22-24 karats (i.e. quite pure) and contain no colloidal gold or gold salts, which may alter skin pigmentation among other unhealthy things.  Sometimes gold leaf is mixed with a bit of silver, but like gold, pure silver is also okay to consume. 

While adding gold leaf to a truffle or cocktail won’t enhance it’s nutritional value or taste, it certainly adds a luxurious touch.  

Dark Chocolate Caramel Truffle Topped with Gold Leaf

More Truffles! Luscious White Chocolate Truffle with Small Sheet of Gold Leaf

Gold leaf is sold in flakes and sheets. Flakes are wonderful for adding gold flecks to alcoholic beverages and sprinkles to truffles, macaroons, and other delightful sugary confections. Sheets of gold leaf cover larger surface areas and may be a bit trickier to work with--but a swath of gold across a wedding cake makes a dramatic statement, so it may be worth a little extra effort! Edible gold leaf costs between $120 and $160 per gram.  

These edible gold leaf flakes are available on Amazon

Gold Leaf Sheet sold by Sur la Table.


Flakes of gold leaf may simply be sprinkled, but gold leaf sheets require a bit more precision. You must handle the delicate material very gently because it easily tears and wrinkles.  Using cotton gloves will prevent the gold leaf from adhering to your fingers and becoming unusable. Cut with an exacto knife and apply with a dry brush (cosmetic brushes work well). Now you're ready to dine in style. 



Photos: Victoria Watkins-Jones via Flickr, YVRBCbro via Flickr, René Suen via Flickr, Amazon, Sur la Table.

Posted in baking, beverage, cocktails, cooking, creative, dessert, edible gold, food, fun, gold, gold leaf, gourment, luxury



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