trader & exporter of saffron &
Silver leaves or Chandi Varks, as they
are generally called, have been used for garnishing sweets, desserts and
beverages. The food grade silver leaves are manufactured as per the
guidelines of Prevention of Food Adulteration (PFA) norms of India as well
as the FDA. In general, edible silver leaves are made of 99.9% pure silver.
The edible silver leaves have a lustrous surface and can be easily applied
to decorate dishes, particularly sweets and deserts. As a food additive
silver leaves have been classified as Food Colouring E174.
Forms of Silver Leaves
White silver foil is as thin as the best chiffon and lustrous. It is extremely
fragile and often breaks up during use. It has no aroma or taste of its own
and is available in the following forms depending upon its uses:
How to Use Silver Leaves
- Sprinkles: For dusting and decorating food preparations.The silver
sprinkles are great for adding sparkle and style to cakes, biscuits,
desserts and any sweet treat.
- Petals: Small flakes used to adorn appetizers, desserts and
chocolates, silver petals add value to the style and presentation of
dishes on special occasions. The petals are available in different
shapes and patterns.
- Leaflets: The silver leaflets are used for the decoration of dishes.
These decorative leaflets are absolutely safe and of food grade.
Silver leaves are so delicate and fragile that they can easily break with a
human touch. The best way to use the sheet (virk) is to place the required
amount of vark on top of the food to be decorated along with the tissue
paper. The vark will stick to the food, and the paper can be peeled off
Processing and Packaging
The processing of silver leaves requires
special skills and manual work, it is not every ones cup of tea.
It requires immense practice and patience to turn silver into a thin pure silver
foil with thickness in microns. In other words, it is an art in itself and
as such only an expert artisan is capable to make it.
The processing of silver leaves requires special skills and manual work. At
same time, silver that is to be processed into leaves needed to be highly
malleable and ductile. It can be pounded into thin sheets of less than even
a micro-metre in thickness without breaking or tearing.
Small pieces of silver are placed between sheets of parchment and pounded
repeatedly with wooden mallets. As the metal thins out, it forms large
sheets. These sheets are divided and the process is repeated. The final
sheets produced are trimmed, cut to various sizes, and sandwiched between
sheets of paper to protect them from being damaged.
Once the sheets are finally ready they are sandwiched between fresh and
clean paper and layers of leaves are packaged in boxes. In the packaging,
each lot of edible white silver foil must have a batch number having details like date of
packaging, thickness, expiry date etc. and is certified as food grade
IWhat is interesting to note is the fact that all through the entire
process, at no point in time, it is touched by hand - right from the
beginning till it is packaged. At the same time, it is equally important
that they are absolutely free from moisture. Hence they are kept in an
airtight container (to prevent tarnishing) and in a cool, dry place.