Buddha Budda: Cannabis-Infused Butter
This is a bit of a departure for us here at Bakepedia. The book Sweet Mary Janeby Karin Lazarus arrived at the Test Kitchen and we weren’t sure what to expect. The book covers sweets and treats made with marijuana and we were interested in what we would find in addition to the classic pot brownie. Suffice it to say that we were immediately blown away by Karin’s sophisticated recipe development and technical thoroughness. The subtitle says it all: “75 Delicious Cannabis-Infused High End Desserts”. Karin runs a bakery by the same name in Boulder, CO and has been baking since she was 8. A serendipitous confluence of events occurred. Karin won a chocolate Scharffen Berger recipe contest, giving her some start-up money, and laws in Boulder passed that would allow her to pursue the licenses needed to obtain medical marijuana, bake with it and sell products. She has never looked back. She went on to win more contests – her OMG! Chocolate Cheesecake Bars won first place in the Rooster THC Classic. New York Magazine dubbed her “The Martha Stewart of weed baking”.
We are featuring these award winning brownies as well as her Carrot Cake Cookies and her Buddha Budda, presented here. The book begins with a detailed primer on pot: how to incorporate it into your baked goods, how to calculate THC content, basic recipes such as her Buddha Budda, Coconut Bliss and Hey Sugar! (these have the marijuana infused in them and then they are used to create the recipes). Please read about How to Calculate Doses, below, before you try any of Karin’s recipes.
Excerpted with permission. Sweet Mary Jane: 75 Delicious Cannabis-Infused High-End Dessertsby Karin Lazarus. Published by Penguin Random House, 2015.
How to Calculate Doses
The level of THC in cannabis and therefore the potency of the cannabis is not always consistent. The way in which the plant is grown, which nutrients are used, how it is cured and differences in the chemical composition of cannabis varieties all affect the amount of THC produced. Below, I’ve outlined a basic way to calculate potency of your baked goods, but since the level of THC in your cannabis may differ from what I’ve listed, be extra cautious and always start at the lowest infusion level.
To find out the number of milligrams of THC per serving and per recipe, multiply the number of tablespoons of the infusion (Buddha Butter) by the milligrams of THC per tablespoon. The resulting number is your total dosage for the full recipe. Divide this number by the total number of servings in the recipe to get your dose per serving. Please see below.
Buddha Budda can be spread on toast or muffins, or melted on waffles or pancakes; basically, you can use it any place you would normally use butter. It can also be substituted for butter in any of your favorite recipes. As you will see in the recipes below, the amount of bud used determines the level of THC in finished desserts, with three levels of dosing.
Digital temperature gun (it’s the only way to test the temperature of the weed)
Decent digital scale that weighs both grams and ounces
Paint-straining bags or cheesecloth
Large bowl Strainer
- 1½ grams cannabis buds, ground or finely crushed ½ cup (8 tablespoons/1 stick) unsalted butter
- Yield: about 150 mg THC total
- 1 tablespoon = about 18.75 mg THC
- 12 edibles: about 12.5 mg THC each
- 18 edibles: about 8.3 mg THC each
- 3 grams cannabis buds, ground or finely crushed ½ cup (8 tablespoons/1 stick) unsalted butter
- Yield: about 300 mg THC total
- 1 tablespoon = about 37.5 mg THC
- 12 edibles: about 25 mg THC each
- 18 edibles: about 16.6 mg THC each
- 6 grams cannabis buds, ground or finely crushed ½ cup (8 tablespoons/1 stick) unsalted butter
- Yield: about 600 mg THC total
- 1 tablespoon = about 75 mg THC
- 12 edibles: about 50 mg THC total
- 18 edibles: about 33.3 mg THC total
- Decarboxylate the cannabis: Preheat the oven to 250°F. Put the cannabis in a small, heat-proof baking dish and place in the oven. After 15 to 20 min¬utes, check the temperature of the cannabis with your digital temperature gun; once it has reached 250°F, let it bake for 30 minutes, checking the tem¬perature frequently. (In addition to decarboxylating, you are removing any moisture left in the plant material.) If it goes over the correct temperature for too long, it will burn, the THC may convert into CBN, and you will lose potency. (See the chart on page 000 in Appendix A for information about cannabinoids.) Remove from the oven and set aside to cool. If not using im¬mediately, store the cannabis in an airtight container in a dark place for up to 2 months.
- Melt the butter in a small saucepan over medium-low heat. Add the decarbed weed and bring the temperature of the butter up to 190°F. Cook for 30 minutes, using the digital temperature gun to check the temperature of the butter frequently and make sure it does not go over 200°F. DO NOT LEAVE UNATTENDED! (If by chance it does go over 200°F for a few minutes, don’t worry, it isn’t ruined. The THC is still in there. But exces¬sive heating causes degradation of THC and may convert it to CBN, one of the cannabinoids responsible for the sedative effects of cannabis, or result in vaporization of the compounds. Inadequate heating isn’t good either, as it causes the majority of the cannabinoids to remain in their acid form and thus unactivated. The density of the product, and the time and temperature of the oven, can also prevent some conversion, which results in unactivated cannabinoids. Adding the decarbed cannabis to the butter or coconut oil and heating it again assures a better conversion.) Mostly, you want to keep everything at a simmer, not a boil. Just turn down the heat and watch it.
- Take the saucepan off the heat and let it sit for 10 minutes.
- It’s now time to press. Place a strainer over a large bowl. Place a paint strainer or cheesecloth into the strainer, folding down the sides. Spoon the infused butter into it. Using a large spoon or potato masher, press as much as you can through the cloth. Then, using your hands (rubber gloves help here!), squeeze the bag. Press out as much of the precious liquid as you can. Measure the amount you have left. Normally, there is about a 25 percent loss; this is not a loss of THC. Make up the difference with regular melted butter.
- Buddha Budda can be stored in an airtight container for up to 8 weeks in the refrigerator. It also freezes well, so make more if you have the bud and freeze the extra batch in an airtight container for up to 6 months