Before I dive into my first column, I figure I should introduce myself. I was born Mary Jean Dunsdon, youngest of four, to a Top Gun fighter pilot and a macramé hut/craft storeowner. So I come by my current profession honestly. I have been unapologetic about my marijuana use and food production since 1993. I sold my first cookies on the world-famous, clothing-optional Wreck Beach that same year.
Before selling cookies, I sold slices of watermelon and T-Shirts to nude people. The T-Shirts had pictures of my best friend on them. He was an 80-year-old Irish bootlegger named Paddy White. Paddy loved to smoke pot. I sold the watermelon for $2 a slice—except to children. It was always free for children. This is where I got my name, Watermelon.
Since those early days, I have easily made and sold more than 1 million infused: Ginger Extra Snap Cookies, Rum-Resin Balls, Bud-der Tarts, Weedish Meatballs, Spinakopita Puff Pastries, Nice Cream Cones, Quiche Your Ass Goodnights and so much more. I love to host marijuana-tasting salons in my home a few times each year.
I cannot stress how important it is to know about serving size and cannabis conversion when hosting such parties. I want everybody to have a great time without sleeping over or freaking out. I have some great party tricks I will share with you in a later column, but for starters, I want to break down my rather simple process, step by step. When it comes to baking edibles, there are three steps to nail:
- Making your shake flour
- Determining your serving sizes
- Converting your cannabis
These processes can be used for almost any recipe. I always encourage responsible edible creations that can be enjoyed by the average person. Advanced edible eaters can have two servings. For me, the easiest method of all for making edibles is by starting with some shake flour.
Making Shake Flour
Shake flour, quite simply, is finely ground, dried cannabis flowers and/or leaves. To make your own, pulverize cannabis flowers and/or leaves into a fine flour using a blender or coffee grinder, and then sift off any fibrous material. Store in an airtight container in the fridge until you're ready to use it on a recipe-by-recipe basis.
Serving Sizes & Portion Control
The most important kitchen tool you will need for creating edibles is a scale. My serving guidelines, which I believe offer the perfect dose for the average person, is 0.5-0.75 grams per serving.
So, if your recipe says serves 10, you will weigh up enough shake flower for 10 servings only. This equates to 5-7.5 grams, depending on the quality of your shake/bud. Don’t be a hero unless you like sleepovers. Less is always more. A little goes a long way. As my mama says, “You can always go back for seconds.”
You can then add your weighed shake to the fat, oil, alcohol or whatever you are using for your cannabis conversion. This helps avoids any confusion on how much to eat, or how much pre-made canna butter to add.
You need to convert dried cannabis to make it active, meaning it gets you high when you ingest it. Scientifically speaking, you need to knock the carbon molecule off the cannabis so it can bind with your cannabinoid receptors. Cannabis molecules cannot easily bind to your receptors with the carbon molecule intact. This is similar to a key that won’t fit into a lock. After you knock the carbon molecule off, the key fits perfectly.
You can knock carbon molecules off using heat, alcohols or fats. This is the process of cannabis conversion taking place. There are many different types of fats you can use to convert cannabis for edibles, including butter, coconut oil and bacon fat.
There are also many different types of alcohol you can used to convert cannabis for edibles, including rum, vodka and black sambuca. Another way to covert cannabis is using dry-cooking techniques done in an oven or a slow cooker, and some patience.