Both Stephanie Hua and Coreen Carroll have been doing a good job at making a name for themselves in California’s cannabis scene in San Francisco.
Hua — a food writer, photographer and founder of gourmet cannabis-infused marshmallow brand Mellows — has been in the low dose edibles game for a minute now. She launched her brand in 2015, where she has been the chief confectioner and mastermind behind the handcrafted desserts that come in at just 5 mg THC per serving. Carroll has also been making waves in the weed world with her popular pop-up event, The Cannaisseur Series, where she pairs a gourmet menu with artisanal cannabis to create a unique culinary experience. So, it only made sense for this dynamic pair of professionally-trained chefs to team up to create a cookbook of cannabis-infused goodness.
The collection of 30 recipes in “Edibles: Small Bites for the Modern Cannabis Kitchen” was designed with the modern, mindful cannabis connoisseur in mind who is looking for a bit of a buzz without getting knocked over the head. These small bites are low-dose (just 5 mg THC per serving) and are perfect for solo snacking or social gatherings where appetizers and tapas are appropriate.
There is lots of prologue leading up to the big shebang. In addition to the recipes, the cookbook includes information about the endocannabinoid system, cannabinoids beyond just THC and CBD and sheds some light on terpenes like myrcene, linalool and limonene. It also offers the low down on calculating dosage, how to activate cannabis through a method called decarboxylation and some tips and techniques while making your own infusions in the kitchen.
Readers will find a combination of sweet and savory recipes like fried mac and cheese bites, corn dog muffins and duck meatball sliders to black sesame and raspberry cupcakes, blueberry lemon macarons and cardamom caramels. There’s even a recipe that shows readers how to recreate their own version of Mellows’ birthday cake flavored marshmallows at home.
It’s a good-looking book — one that could easily earn a spot on the coffee table among the other artsy books. Photographer Linda Xiao’s shots are minimal and immaculately-styled with a mouth-watering image for every recipe. It’s also easy to read, a joy to thumb through and does its part to continue to refine the art of making edibles without looking down on classic stoner recipes by including elevated versions brownies and even green eggs and ham.
It’s clear, though, that this cookbook is intended for people who are interested in expanding their eating and cooking vocabulary. It offers readers and home cooks an opportunity to enjoy and learn how to make things they probably wouldn’t normally include on a home menu — let alone one that is infused — like gruyère and green garlic gougères, blood orange shatter blondies or grapefruit negroni “pot” de fruits. The recipes are not meant to intimidate. In fact, these two go out of their way to demystify the entire experience step-by-step from infusion to completion.
Hua and Carroll invite readers to step out of their comfort zones whether it’s trying out techniques like sous vide (vacuum-sealing food and cooking it in a temperature controlled water bath) or adding new appliances to the kitchen repertoire to help cooks level up the quality of their dishes. They’ve managed to make the book fun without being too whimsical and accessible without sacrificing sophistication.
Does the world really need another cannabis cookbook? That’s up for debate. But regardless of which side of the fence your opinion lies, this one is definitely worth checking out and adding to your collection.
TELL US, do you have a favorite cannabis-infused recipe?