Amidst a whole rainbow of interesting food inventions, the whole idea of magnificent food art found in restaurants and events worldwide is a must-mention.
One of the food decors that everyone finds astonishing is the edible gold leaf. It surely is extraordinarily appetizing to have food served with some shimmering garnishing on top.
Edible gold dates back to thousands of years, and decorating treats with the it seems to be a special one in the food scene even today. The practice has evolved to let people experience a dash of decadence, even when eating some of the most regular foods.
This surely creates huge curiosity among some – what does edible gold taste like? Take a look below for a deeper insight.
What does edible gold taste like?
Edible gold tastes like nothing, and it has no actual taste. It does have a slight texture, but it’s very fine and will not make anyone choke.
Although having gold seems to be the ultimate something in gourmet luxury, it actually has no taste. It adds nothing to a dish other than lots of glitter. All edible noble metals are largely tasteless.
However, edible gold surely adds to aesthetic appeal. It makes the customers enjoy their meal or snack that’s luxurious and rare.
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What does edible gold look like?
Edible gold usually comes in the form of sheets, specifically, loose-leaf and transfer leaf that are used to decorate different types of treats and meals. Apart from leaf, it also comes as flakes and has the following varieties:
- Dust: Very fine powdered edible gold that brings out a beautiful touch to treats when sprinkled on top.
- Flakes: Slightly larger particles than powdered granules, available in free-form shapes.
- Petals: Petals are larger in size as compared to flakes and can be easily held in tweezers.
- Shapes: This is edible gold cut in specific shapes, such as hearts, circles and more!
Whichever you use depends on what you’re planning to make. The most common one is gold sheets, which can be ripped and torn to make flakes or interesting shapes.
If gold is tasteless, why put it in food?
Edible gold is used to add a glamorous touch to a dish. As mentioned above, edible gold was historically confined to the idea of fine dining, applied to sweet as well as savory treats to illustrate wealth or to honor the person having them.
For centuries, very thin pounded sheets of gold have been used to garnish European pastries. It has also been used to adorn Japanese green tea in the ground form.
The flakes add a glimmer to food, while also increasing their price value at the same time. Today, edible gold leaf has made its way to fast-food restaurants too. The idea of a luxurious life has advanced to the kind of food we have too.
Some of the world’s finest restaurants have edible gold as a part of their best foods; it brings out a sense of class and luxury for the customers.
What food items contain edible gold?
Majorly, edible gold is used to adorn desserts, including candies and cupcakes for some added splendor. Another frequent use at fancy bars includes the decoration of certain alcoholic drinks like champagne using floating gold flecks. Cocktails instantly achieve a wow factor with the addition of those bright flakes.
Loose leaf is the form that goes best for tearing into small pieces and charming up candies or truffles. On the other hand, transfer leaf is best for covering a large surface with edible gold.
Nowadays, chefs apply it to desserts and snacks like burgers, sushi, coffee, tacos, and even hot dogs. It’s lightly sprinkled atop a truffle or candy to spruce it up, or used in the form of full sheets to decorate entire cakes or a sushi roll.
How is edible gold safe?
The fact that gold is biologically inert makes it pass the human digestive tract without being absorbed. Pure gold is totally safe to eat unless a person is allergic to gold. But, that’s quite a rare condition.
It’s not only safe but also equally durable in nature. In fact, the durability of gold has made it a major part of dental fillings and us used by dentists around the globe.
However, it’s safe only to eat pure gold, i.e. gold that’s at least 22 carats in purity, check more about gold carats here. Gold with a carat limit below this has got certain impurities that can be dangerous to eat.
When buying gold, it is a must to make sure that the metal is labeled as ‘edible’ and comes with the correct carat mention. Only quality gold leaves are fit to eat as cheaper ones may come with impurities.
Edible gold is surely one of the priciest food items in the world. But considering it is true gold, the flakes and sheets seem to be relatively inexpensive.
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How is edible gold added to food ?
Edible gold sheets are extremely delicate which makes them quite tricky to handle. They are likely to wrinkle or tear easily, and the fact that they are super thin makes them likely to blow away with little gust of air – even one’s breath!
A gold leaf becomes unfit to use if it sticks to the skin on touching. And that’s why it calls for some specific tools and careful directions when working with it. It includes a razor blade or a paring knife, a clean and dry paintbrush, and a pair of cotton gloves to handle edible gold leaves.
Since the gold leaf sticks to most surfaces, use the knife to move the sheet to the food item it is covering. Small tongs or tweezers work best for removing the gold flakes from the storage container, then placing it on the food item.
Whether it’s fine dining or fast food outlets, some chefs love using edible gold to dazzle and delight the people with the meals’ appearance. It definitely is a unique idea to garnish food with something as glorious as gold.
After all, isn’t it great to bring out that extra shine and luxury to your servings, especially if it’s totally non-toxic to have?