Where are those tiny edible silver balls?

I’m in the mood to make cookies this Christmas since the first time since … well, ever really. I’ve got some decorations for cookies, but I can’t find those little nonpareils – tiny bb-sized balls of candy coated with edible silver. Old-timers seem to remember them, on cupcakes and such. But I can’t find them – at supermarkets, or Michaels craft stores. Does anyone know where they’ve bought them recently? Or when did they stop making them? To be honest, I’m a little worried small kids would see edible metallic spheres and start swallowing screws they find lying around – did that happen, and they ended up banned?

Try googling “silver dragees”.

According to a magazine article I just read (in Ladies Home Journal), the packages are now labeling them as being “for decoration only; not edible.” because of the small amount of metal actually contained in them! :eek:

I grew up nomming these things thoughtlessly, not to mention a bunch of second-hand smoke in the house and no seatbelts in the car. . .

it’s a wonder I ever reached the age I have! :stuck_out_tongue:

Just a heads-up - the FDA doesn’t consider the metal ones to be edible and California no longer sells them. Depending on where you live, that may be part of your problem.

Yup, dragees.

As of at least a decade ago, you couldn’t find them in traditional grocery stores in the U.S. any longer. I know this because, around '97 or so, my wife had an entire Christmas dinner planned around a cake that used those things (in both silver and gold), and was extremely upset when I went to four different grocery stores and couldn’t find them.

I finally did find them at a specialty grocery store; they had big labels on them that said “NOT A FOOD PRODUCT”.

I have no idea if you can even find them at specialty stores any more, though it wouldn’t surprise me if they were available at a bakery supply store.

Even as a kid, I only rarely ate those. The larger ones, at least, seemed just way too hard to be good for your teeth (and this from someone who still crunches away at hard candy) and they didn’t even taste good.

Oh no! Not sold in California. They have ridiculous labeling laws, that make the other 49 states laugh in derision.

Article about the “controversial dragee”:

As it happens, I’ve been helping the kids at the kindergarten where I work to decorate Christmas cookies these last few days, and we’ve used dragees among other things. So they’re definitely still sold here. I recommend stocking up on your next trip to Scandinavia.

That lawyer should go after people selling Goldschläger next.:rolleyes:

I’m not a doctor (or a lawyer, thank god), but I think gold passes right through you. I know silver is why some people have turned blue (although that was colloidal silver). So he has a point that silver can have health effects, but considering how little you’re going to eat it’s ridiculous.

Yep. We had some in the house left over from when my grandfather retired as a baker decades earlier. My mom is usually paranoid about things that might hurt the kids, but she knowing let us eat them. I would not let these anywhere near kids as they have real silver.

I wouldn’t use them myself, not because of a trace amount of silver getting into my system, but because breaking teeth is painful, inconvenient, and expensive (ask me how I know this!).

Oh, so they’re called dragees, OK, I remember them now. Well, that’s what screwed up my ability to find them. Right, like that word – “dragee” is really going to jump out in the grocery store stockboy’s mind. Well, now with the name I can Google …

Oh dear, illegal in California, and the activist lawyer even took on Martha Stewart. So brave. So selfless.

Oh wait, I can order online … wait, they come in gold too, and in multiple sizes, and in rainbow metalic colors. :eek: Holy crap! I can buy them by the pound. And I will. My Christmas tree cookies will look nicer than the average tree.

Thanks to the name, I can even seach the SDMB, it appears this all started in 2000. Mmm … aluminum traces in my cupcakes.

You know, when I was real little, I wasn’t sure I was supposed to eat them. Only when I was older, and could read the ingredients list on the box, did I start crunching these little ball bearings.

Well, if anyone’s bought them recently in a store, I’d like to know where, anyway.

They are called cachous here in oz. Last weekend I consumed a significant amount while “helping” some kids make cupcakes.

Same here! I remember seeing them and being confused as to why they’d put CLEARLY inedible decoration on something kids might eat.

have a look at the back of the lone rangers horse… :smiley:

Weird, there was a thread about this on snopes a couple days ago. I must confess, I’ve never heard of them or even had one, but now I kind of want one. In spite of the danger.

My mom broke a crown on a conversation heart my father picked out for her. :smack:

Whew, I survived my childhood by the skin of my teeth if those weren’t fit for human consumption. :slight_smile: