Homemade cannabis edibles
There are indeed many different products derived from the cannabis plant today, as well as the uses that can be made of legal marijuana. One of these, the most popular, is the making of "edibles" i.e., homemade cannabis foods, such as oil, cannabis butter, flavored teas and coffees, up to recipes for breads, cookies, cakes, and so on.
There are now all kinds of edibles on sale in cannabis shops: brownies, candies, honey, oil, chocolate bars,to name but a few.
As with any food, there are some tricks to follow when preparing an edible at home, particularly regarding doses and combinations.
The effects of cannabis (even that which contains minimal percentages of THC) can vary greatly from one variety of marijuana to another because of specific cannabinoid and terpene profiles present. This is why it is also important to choose the right variety of legal weed for us, beyond the basic genetic differences, indica or sativa.
Edibles release cannabis compounds into the bloodstream through the digestive system, so their effects begin to be appealing in a significantly longer time than a joint, but also for a much longer time.
The rules to follow for ideal consumption of edibles
One of the basic rules is not to consume cannabis edibles and smoke joints at the same time, to avoid the entourage effect, a phenomenon of chemical synergy that occurs between the various cannabis compounds when taken together. It is also best to avoid consuming alcohol or adding other substances in combination with cannabis edibles. Certainly consuming legal cannabis has no psychotropic effects, having very low percentages of THC, but it is still best to keep in mind some effects that are typical of the cannabinoids present, such as munchies, or the relaxing effect that can be enhanced if consumption is combined with smoking or alcohol or in general if the recipes contain too high a dose of the product in relation to the weight and psychophysical state of the person consuming it.
One of the mistakes most frequently made is, then, that of wanting to consume cannabis raw. Instead, to fully appreciate the effect of the cannabinoids present in cannabis buds, it is necessary to activate them through a hot process called decarboxylation. It will be sufficient to place your cannabis buds for 1 hour on a baking sheet in a preheated oven at 110-120°C to achieve this activation and make sure to turn them over every 15 minutes so that they do not burn.
As for the doses to be used, in theory, if this is the first time you are trying your hand at making cannabis treats consider that 2g of dried buds might already be enough to flavor about 20 cookies.
We suggest you start with a maximum of 4g of cannabis per serving anyway. If you are a regular user, you can increase the doses a bit to a maximum of 8-16g per serving. Of course, we do not recommend that you eat 20 at one time. However, experience will help you adjust over time to the amounts that are most palatable for you.
An interesting suggestion is to add lecithin (a phospholipid found in foods such as avocado, eggs or sunflower seeds) to your edibles to increase cannabinoid absorption.
Making cannabis butter
An excellent basic ingredient you can make at home is great cannabis-flavored butter with which to bake your own cookies, cakes, and other baked goods. So here are some common sense tips for making it the best way:
- choose slow cooker electric pots, so that the temperature is kept low and constant for an extended period of time;
- forget about mixers, food processors and coffee grinders, better not to pulverize the cannabis buds too finely, rather use the grinder to coarsely chop the inflorescences, or the herbaceous flavor may become too strong and the color of the butter too dark green;
- always add a little water to the (already decarboxylated)buds when adding them to the butter (equal amounts of butter and water is best) during infusion. This way you will prevent the cannabinoids from degrading and the fat from burning;
- get cheesecloth to strain the resulting mixture, without squeezing but letting it drip into a bowl; the tightly woven fabric will let only the liquid part pass through and will keep the butter purer and free of residual cannabis bits;
- taste a spoonful of marijuana butter or use the infusion as a condiment to evaluate its flavor and gauge its effects so you know how much to add when you prepare your recipes;
- remember to mix the butter well with the other ingredients so that the cannabis present is evenly distributed.
Cooking edibles with kief
Kief has a finer consistency than cannabis inflorescences and dissolves almost instantly in liquids and fats,even at room temperature, making it the ideal product for preparing edibles. In its dried version it should be ground, in its resinous version it should be dissolved with heat before use. Keep in mind that kief is a concentrate of active ingredients and therefore should be used in edibles in a greatly reduced dose compared to regular cannabis.