Why you should care
Because if cannabis is your medicine, now you can drink it.
The backpacker set may remember trying — or avoiding — a drink found mostly in northern India called bhang lassi. Made from cannabis, the concoction is associated with the worship of the Hindu god Shiva, and a glass of it gets you high as a kite.
For Julianna Carella, founder of cannabis-snacks business Auntie Dolores, the edible (or drinkable) high has become an area of expertise. Here she’s tried to update the bhang lassi to her healthy tastes, and hence: the Cannabis Superfood Smoothie. Carella demonstrated how it’s done in a secret location in Oakland, California, where she reigns over her “edibles” business in a spotless, industrial kitchen.
Cooking with cannabis is a tricky affair, with the potency of the cannabinoids — the compound that makes you high — difficult to evaluate without a lab. (Auntie Dolores does test its products in a lab.) So perhaps the bhang lassi is best left to the professionals. Carella’s superfood smoothie is strong stuff, too, which she admitted after drinking half of a glass.
As for legal? Depends where you live. In California, this is one recipe that is definitely for adults with a medical marijuana license. Finding yourself in Colorado? Any adult can have at it! That is, according to the state government, not the feds. Wherever you live, use caution, and definitely keep whatever you cook out of the reach of kids.
For more on India’s bhang lassi, you can watch this short documentary on bhang’s use in Jaisalmer. Or see a couple of Finnish filmmakers literally drink in the culture around the bhang lassi in Varanasi.
Julianna’s Cannabis Superfood Smoothie
- 1 frozen banana
- 1 can coconut milk
- 1 cup kefir, yogurt or ice cream
- Infused coconut milk (instructions below)
- 3 tablespoons walnut butter or other nut butter
- 2 tablespoons coconut sugar or honey
- ½ cup Auntie Dolores medicated glazed pecans
- 1 tablespoon raw cacao powder
- ½ teaspoon cinnamon
Directions: Blend ingredients until smooth and enjoy!
Cannabis Coconut Milk Infusion
- 2 ounces cannabis bud, ground finely
- 2 cans organic coconut milk (13.66 ounces each)
- 3 cups filtered water. Start with 3 cups, and increase as needed.
First off — we strongly recommend you test this homemade coconut milk infusion at a professional cannabis lab to determine its potency. You’ll need only a gram of the infusion at most labs. And do keep in mind that one dose is 10 milligrams.
Why does this work? Coconut milk binds well with cannabinoids thanks to its high fat content. This recipe yields about 3 cups of medicated coconut milk, which you can use in Thai curries and other savory dishes, or incorporate into any baked good, smoothie or milk shake.
- Remove stems from cannabis, weigh and grind in food processor.
- Add cannabis, coconut milk and water to pot. Set burner to low to medium setting, or 160 degrees.
- Stir well until lumps are dissolved and liquid is a creamy leaf mixture.
- Increase temperature to 180-200 degrees, or medium setting, and bring to a low boil.
- Cover and cook on very low boil for 3 hours, stirring pot every 10 minutes and adding warm water as needed. You will end up with half the original liquid volume.
- Strain over muslin fabric or layers of cheese cloth.
- When cool, transfer to jars and freeze unused portion.