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Ganja goes gourmet

Legalise it, and they will buy it: the sales of cannabis in the United States are forecast to grow to about $8-billion annually in 2018 from about $2-billion now, according to a recent report by the Marijuana Business Factbook.

Not everyone enjoys smoking it, however, hence the thriving scene of what are called “edibles” or “medibles”. It’s no accident that the most popular edibles are usually sweet treats such as lollipops, biscuits, muffins or cakes. But it doesn’t stop there. Any food can be laced with cannabis – a flavourful soup, a thick bolognaise or a spicy curry. Hey, you can sprinkle the powdered herb on a salad, a chicken sandwich or your favourite pizza.

Still, with all this edible eating going on, there are bound to be problems because of the strength of the cannabis – and that old problem of, “Oh, this isn’t working, so I’ll just have another cookie”.

According to Colorado Public Radio, one of the city’s largest hospitals is now seeing an increase in those seeking help after eating cannabis in food.

But, with this in mind, if someone wants to bake edibles at home, they can find information on any number of websites, including the stonerscookbook.com or marijuana.com.

The base of many dishes is cannabutter. This can be made on a stovetop.

The process is something like this: remove seeds and stalks from the cannabis, pour the herb into a small saucepan with melted butter and a little water. Once this has cooked for a while, strain it through a sieve and put it in the fridge overnight.

But for those who plan to make cannabutter fairly often, there is the Magical Butter Machine.

There are plenty of YouTube videos of people using the machine. One guy, who looks a little like a younger Steve Buscemi, demonstrates his technique by emptying melted butter, a little water, his favourite cannabis – four ounces of “lambsbread” – into the machine.

It heats and blends for four hours, and transforms into what looks like green water. This then goes into his fridge, and the next morning, he shows us, in his gleeful words, “a huge puck of green butter”.

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