As legalized marijuana makes cannabis culture more mainstream, there has been a surge of interest in cooking with cannabis. Edible forms of marijuana account for 45% of recreational sales in Colorado, and many enthusiasts are now experimenting with marijuana as an ingredient in their own kitchens.
Gone are the days of offerings being limited to simple ganja cookies and weed brownies. Today, culinary experts are creating sophisticated dishes that incorporate marijuana into the food in complimentary and creative fashions.
We caught up with Matt Gray of The Stoner's Cookbook to discuss the progression of cooking with cannabis, their very popular online cannabis cooking community, as well as their upcoming hardcover book, Herb: Mastering the Art of Cooking with Cannabis .
TheStonersCookbook.com was created in 2006 as an online resource for people to share recipes and their passion for cooking with cannabis with one another. It has progressed into a very active community with a monthly reach of 120 million people. While initially the recipes were all submitted by the community, recently The Stoner’s Cookbook has been working with top edible chefs who submit their own recipes to share with the community. They are now working to incorporate these recipes as well as a wealth of culinary information about cannabis into their new book.
CPG: Hi Matt, how did you get interested in cooking with cannabis?
Matt: My interest originated from the fact I had a close friend who suffered from PTSD, and I learned that he was using cannabis to get through night terrors. It was that personal story from a friend that really inspired me to get into the industry and do what I can to help smash the stigma that surrounds cannabis, and allow people to find responsible ways to consume it.
CPG: You recently launched a crowdfunding campaign to create a hard copy book, Herb: Mastering the Art of Cooking with Cannabis. How is that coming along?
Matt: The crowdfunding campaign has been overwhelmingly positive. We’re super happy with the progress it’s made in such a short period of time. We’re nine days into the campaign and have already hit 37% of our goal. We are so excited to get the project underway, and create what we consider will be a groundbreaking cookbook.
CPG: Tell us a bit about the format of the new book:
Matt: We start with covering the science of cannabis and the botany of the plant, so people can really understand for themselves the different characteristics of the plant and how it’s going to affect you. We also cover the medical benefits, as many of our readers are people using it for medicinal purposes.
We then cover the techniques of cooking with cannabis and the extraction methods. Before we dive into full recipes, it’s really important people understand the intricate methods for extracting THC into fat soluble ingredients such as butter and oil. After we cover these techniques, we dive into full five-course meals that people can make in the comfort of their home and enjoy with friends.
CPG: Where do you see cooking with cannabis progressing in the future?
Matt: I see more and more home chefs as well as talented professional chefs taking a stab at cooking with cannabis as there is really an art and a science to it. At the end of the day, the possibilities are really endless, you can make anything cannabis infused.
The Stoner’s Cookbook was nice enough to provide us some recipes from renowned chef Melissa Parks to share with you. You can also check out their crowdfunding campaign for Herb: Mastering the Art of Cooking with Cannabis over at InkShare.com.
Medicated Butternut Squash Soup
- 1 (2 to 3 pound) butternut squash, peeled and seeded
- 1 tbsp. unmedicated unsalted butter
- 1 tsp. vegetable oil
- 1 medium white onion (small dice)
- 1 small red pepper (small dice)
- 5 cups low sodium chicken stock
- Pinch nutmeg
- Salt and pepper
- 1 ½ tbsp. cannabutter
- Optional addition: dollop of crème fraiche, sour cream, or plain Greek yogurt
Cut squash into 1-inch chunks, and set aside. In large stock pot melt unmedicated butter and vegetable oil. Add diced onion, red pepper, and a pinch of salt. Cook until the onion becomes translucent. This will take around 8 minutes. Add squash and stock to the pot, bring to a simmer, and cook until squash is tender. (Approx. 15 to 20 minutes). Remove squash chunks with slotted spoon and place in a blender and puree. Return blended squash to pot. Stir and season with nutmeg, salt, and pepper. Last add cannabutter and gently stir for 4 minutes ensuring even distribution. Serve with dollop of crème fraiche.
Seared Bone-in Ribeye topped w/ Garlic Herb Cannacompound Butter
- 2 1lb Bone-in Ribeye
- 2 tbsp. vegetable oil
- Sea salt and cracked black pepper
- 3 tbsp. garlic herb cannacompound butter
Rub steaks on both sides with the vegetable oil. Place the steaks on a plate, cover with plastic wrap and let stand at room temperature for 30 minutes to 1 hour. Season the steaks liberally with salt and pepper. Preheat a stovetop grill pan or heavy bottom skillet over medium-high heat. Once the skillet is hot arrange the steaks in the pan and cook for 5 to 7 minutes on the first side, and then flip the steaks over. Continue cooking on this side for an additional 4-6 minutes more for medium-rare, or until done to your liking. Transfer the steaks to a platter, cover loosely with aluminum foil, and let rest for 5 minutes before serving. Just before serving top warm steaks with garlic herb cannacompound butter and enjoy. The steak pairs nicely with roasted fingerling potatoes and creamed spinach.
*Garlic Herb Cannacompound Butter
- 1 cup cannabutter
- ¼ cup fresh parsley
- ½ tsp garlic powder
- ¼ tsp onion powder
- 1 tsp sea salt
- 1 tsp garlic salt
- fresh cracked black pepper to taste