At one point in cannabis culture history, mastering the art of baking the perfect weed brownie was considered a rite of passage, but those days are long gone.
Thanks to the development of medical marijuana programs and the decriminalization and legalization of recreational cannabis in multiple states, the THC-infused world of eats has evolved far beyond brownies, cookies and admittedly impressive dispensary snacks and moved into the culinary space.
Cannabis cuisine had been gaining popularity among casual consumers and connoisseurs alike, but now it’s being welcomed into the mainstream as never before.
When Martha Stewart gets in on the action, you know it’s gone mainstream.
Media and entertainment have been pushing the narrative of marijuana normalcy into the homes of more conventional audiences with shows like Vice’s “Bong Appetit” and VH1’s “Snoop and Martha’s Potluck Dinner Party.” Chefs around the country are embracing cannabis and elevating the lowly edible to the same sensory realm as high-end cuisine by curating pop-up dinners, supper clubs and private events where cannabis can shine.
Cat Cora, the first female “Iron Chef” and an advocate for cannabis who recently graced the cover of Cannabis Now Magazine, is speaking out about infusing foods with marijuana.
“I’m learning a lot about usage, dosage, things like that,” she told the magazine in April. “I’m a big proponent for olive oil. I’m Greek, obviously, but the Mediterranean diet as we know it is the healthiest diet on the planet. So [I’m adding cannabis olive oil to] anything that I can infuse.”
For example, she said she’s put cannabis olive oil in vinaigrette for salads. “I have so many amazing ideas and a lot of things that I really want to apply it to,” she added. “I want to create products around cannabis with the right partner and the right situation.”
It’s gaining respect at the top culinary levels.
This shift from stoner snacks to foodies and fine dining puts the focus not only on the buzz the plant creates when consumed but on its flavor profile and pairing capabilities, just like any other herb or even wine.
Andrea Drummer is the co-owner of a Los Angeles culinary cannabis events company, Elevation VIP Cooperative. As a classically trained chef, the Cordon Bleu graduate gives cannabis the gourmet treatment in dishes that reveal her ingenuity and creativity. Take, for example, her cannabis-infused bread pudding soufflé, which she brulées, or her Southern take on stuffed grape leaves made instead with collard greens filled with cannabis-infused spicy dirty rice, which she served at a private Spotify dinner event.
Drummer’s skills have earned her a spot on “Cooking on High,” the first cannabis cooking competition show that features chefs from around the country. The show debuted on Netflix this month.
While that’s exciting, Drummer said she sees even bigger things on the horizon.
“Bringing cannabis into the culinary conversation is important because it allows people to open their minds to something they may have been against because they haven’t understood its potential,” she said. “With more people becoming educated about it, I think cannabis cooking will evolve to the place where we will see things like restaurants and cafes at some point.”
But the law is keeping cannabis out of restaurants.
For now, you won’t find restaurants that offer full-service cannabis dining even in states like California or Colorado.
The reason is legality.
Because cannabis is still a Schedule I substance under federal law, states that have legalized recreational marijuana are only offering licenses and permits that allow chefs to serve cannabis-infused food in private settings. (Just a reminder to know your local laws.)
To Read The Rest Of This Article By K. Astre on Huffington Post
Published: June 29, 2018
Founder & Interim Editor of L.A. Cannabis News