A new generation of chefs is in full swing, experimenting how to infuse dishes with grass, whose different strains can smell and taste lemon or mushrooms or grain. And, of course, they can complement this taste with the intoxicating experience of THC, just like traditional chefs can be associated with particular wines. Everything is corny like hell, and it turns out that one of the best cannabis chefs in AmericaMichael Magallanes is also head of the WIRED office in San Francisco. (To be clear, the food that he cooks for us is excellent, but it's definitely weed-free.) So, in this 420, come with us for a science-filled journey into the kitchen frontier at cannabis.
First, we need to talk about what cannabis does to the human body. When you inhale cannabis vapor from a distilled oil or you smoke pure flowers, the THC moves along an unobstructed pathway from the lungs to the bloodstream. From there, THC molecules enter the brain and interact with the endocannabinoid system, integrating perfectly into the CB1 receptor. produce psychoactive effects.
THC eventually reaches the liver after smoking, but not in the same amounts as when you eat cannabis. With this avenue, THC moves from the stomach to the liver, where your body metabolizes it into something called 11-hydroxy-THC. "The main task of the liver is to make things water soluble, so that they can be excreted and taken out of the body," said Jeff Raber, CEO of Werc Shop, a cannabis laboratory. "If they stayed in our body and formed, wow, that would be bad."
The delicate part of liver metabolism with THC is that 11-hydroxy-THC is five times more potent than its precursor. That's why edibles can you hit so hardand why cannabis chefs are very methodical in their work.
You see, the THC in the plant comes naturally in the form of tetrahydrocannabinolic acid, or THCA, which is non-psychoactive. It's only after heating the THCA, in a process called decarboxylation, that it turns into THC, although small amounts naturally transform over time at room temperature. For example, the first stage of Cannabis Leader Michael Magallanes (again outside the WIRED office) was to determine how long it took to heat the weed and at what temperature. "It probably took a good month to do different times and temperatures and send those in a laboratoryThe laboratory gave him THC readings, "Now I have a very consistent way of proceeding." In particular, I put the cannabis in a bag in boiling water at 100 degrees Celsius for an hour and a half to two hours.
From there, Magellan infuses cannabis into various cooking oils, such as coconut or olive. This is at a lower temperature, to avoid converting even more THCA into THC (thus giving up its minute calculations) for four to five hours. He can then add these oils to things like mashed potatoes or other foods that do not require high temperature cooking.
Because it works with oil, as opposed to infusion of THC into the main ingredient of a meal, Magellan can be very precise with its doses and adapt them to preferences of its customers. Novices tend to do their best with between 3 and 5 milligrams of THC during the meal, while experienced cannabis users (especially drug users) will go up to 1,000 milligrams. "It only remains to get the right plate to the right person," says Magallanes. "I have not had any problem with that so far."
The high is only part of the experience. Different varieties of cannabis express different compositions of terpenes, the volatile compounds that make the smell and taste of the weed as weed. This means that a variety could have the same taste as citrus, which Magallanes could add to asparagus with lemon, embellished with the acidity of the hawthorn berry. Another strain may look more granular, and goes well with chicken and mushrooms.
"For me, it's trying to push the boundaries of the culinary world," says Magallanes. "I'm trying to find quality ingredients to incorporate to my food in the same way that I would with any ingredient like asparagus – it's really unexplored."
But let's go back to the highest. Just as a tasting menu in a gourmet restaurant can come with wine pairings, enhancing the experience with both extra flavors and drunkenness, or too potent cannabis leaders use the same. Grass to increase a meal. "It's a brain experience that enhances the taste and visual appearance of food," says Magallanes.
Problem, though: You may have noticed a flagrant lack of cannabis restaurants popping up in states legalizing recreational use. Part of the problem is empowering. "From the perspective of the business owner, getting a retail cannabis license is path more difficult than getting a liquor license, "says Morgan Fox, spokesperson for the National Cannabis Industry Association.
Secondly, a cannabis restaurant could not let anyone under 21 enter the door, which is great for guests who hate children, but not for the bottom line of an establishment. "They also need to worry about the legal dosage, because you can not sell any product in most of these states containing more than 10 milligrams of THC per unit," Fox adds. "If you have a bowl of pepper, it's much more difficult to ensure that regulators respect these limits." Nevertheless, says Fox, the demand for cannabis-based cooking is extremely strong, at least anecdotally.
So, for now, culinary cannabis will remain a private affair, and most of our asparagus will remain sober and ruthless.
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