On Monday, Siobhan Adcock wrote about the start of Holiday Cookie Season and which recipes she plans to try this year. Later that day, Siobhan shared some of her delicate and butter-y thumbprint cookies with the Epi staff (delicious) and naturally the conversation centered around our favorite cookie recipes and holiday baking memories. Someone brought up dragées and asked whether they are really edible? Dragées are perhaps more commonly known as those little silver balls used to add sparkle to cut-out wreathes and trees. My sister Alex and I have a long tradition of decorating Christmas cookies and we've never shied away from eating the little silver decorations (or the raw-egg-filled cookie dough), but are they safe? Are dragées really edible?
Poking around the internet, I found that just about every online source features some reference to the FDA recommendation that dragées are only for decoration and not to be consumed. And, after a Napa Valley lawyer filed several lawsuits in 2003, dragées have all but disappeared in California. The lawyer argued that silver is toxic and can build up in the body over time. Most of the distributors settled, agreeing to stop selling silver decorations in California. (For more on dragées in California, check out this article from the San Francisco Chronicle.)
Do you eat dragées or do you consider them for decoration only?
Also, today happens to be National Cookie Day, so take Siobhan's advice and check out our 25 Days of Christmas Cookie Calendar.
by Lauren Salkeld
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