A lot of people are apprehensive about cooking with marijuana because if something goes wrong, they are out of a lot of marijuana. However, there are some easy tips on how to avoid common cooking with marijuana mistakes. Read on and you will be Marijario Batali in no time!
HOW NOT TO SCREW UP COOKING WITH MARIJUANA
Cannabis edibles have always been popular in the stoner community. However, with marijuana legalization happening state-by-state across the United States, the popularity of cannabis edibles are growing. With masses of people just beginning to become familiar with the world of cannabis, novices are shocked and intrigued by the idea of marijuana lollipops, gummies, chocolates, teas, and brownies.
What’s so convenient about edibles is how versatile they are. For instance, say an elderly person has finally agreed to use medical marijuana for the first time in their lives to deal with their arthritis pain. As an older person who lived through the “War on Drugs” era propaganda, the idea of smoking medical marijuana might leave a bad taste in their mouth. Eating a pot brownie on the other hand, is much more discreet. Plus when done right, it can be tasty too. If you’re going to win granny over, it’s with sweets. That’s how they won you over in the beginning too.
As the popularity of edibles has grown, cooking with marijuana has become an art form. Culinary masters concoct marijuana-laced menus of fine-dining foods. None of us claim to be an Iron Chef, but everybody in this world has to cook at home sometimes. Heck, some people even brew their own beer at home! Why not make your own edibles?
PRE-HEAT THE MARIJUANA
On your bud lives tiny little hairs called rhizomes. Inside these hairs lives an acid called Tetrahydrocannabinolic acid (THCA). Peeling back the onion that is marijuana, inside those acids lives oils that have healing compounds, including cannabinoids. One of the most prominent of those compounds is tetrahydrocannabinol (THC). This cannabinoid gives marijuana its psychoactive abilities.
To receive the most benefit from the THC, you need to put the marijuana through a process called decarboxylation. All you need to do is add the cannabis onto a lined baking sheet and bake at 220-240 degrees F for a half hour. When you take this pivotal step in cannabis cooking, the rhizomes secrete THC, making your final mix more potent.
If you are cooking with kief, you still need to go through the same process. However, it should be ready in about 20 minutes. Just keep an eye out to make sure the kief is not burning. Then that would negate this whole process and render your cannabis useless.
A number of cooking with cannabis recipes will tell you to grind your marijuana. While that is necessary in some cases, don’t grind too much. There is no need to take out all of your life’s frustrations on this precious bud. When you are cooking with marijuana, you want the little hairs on the marijuana to still be alive. That’s where the THC lives.
Finely grinding marijuana will smash the hairs and cause the final product you are cooking to taste like grass. It will also turn the color of your oils and butters green. Just use a hand grinder to break it up. Don’t smash it to smithereens.
Keep an eye on your oven. Just like you had to make sure the marijuana didn’t burn in the decarboxylation process, you need to look out for it until the very end. If you own an oven that tends to heat up too much, turn it down. THC dies at 392 degrees F. However, it should be noted that THC also begins to lose its potency much more before it reaches that temperature. Don’t go much over 275 degrees F.
If you are decarboxylating, be sure you don’t dry the herb out completely or burn it. That will change the flavor and potency of the plant.
ADD WATER TO MIXTURES
When making cannabutters and oils, add water into the mixes. This will help in a couple of ways. For one, it will dilute the vibrancy of the green hue that ground marijuana turns the butters and oils.
Secondly, when you are infusing marijuana, cook it at a lower temperature than boiling. Boiling temperature is 212 degrees F. If the water gets too hot, add cold water and turn the temperature down. Scorching the buds will only dilute the THC’s potency.
DON’T PUT IN TOO MUCH MARIJUANA
If you are new to cooking with marijuana, your best bet is to start slow and see how it affects you. From there, increase each time you cook until you find the right high. However, jumping in with both feet the first time out and throwing in a lot of marijuana can sour the whole edibles experience for you.
When you are eat too much marijuana at once, your body may suffer a THC overdose. While it won’t prove to be fatal, THC overdoses can cause:
Lack of Concentration
Loss of Coordination
When you consume edibles, you will not feel the effects instantaneously. That is a stark contrast to the experience you have when you smoke marijuana. Edibles typically take up to a half hour to kick in. Once they do, the high will last longer than when you smoke marijuana as it can last anywhere from 4 to 12 hours. All of these lasting effects depend on many variables from age to gender to weight.
DON’T ADD TOO LITTLE MARIJUANA
While you don’t want to overindulge, you also don’t want to under-medicate. Being conservative with marijuana will only lead to wasting marijuana. Instead of using a little bit and holding onto as much marijuana as you can, just use more and eat less portions. Having a stronger batch that you eat a little at time of is much better than a weak batch that you house in one sitting.