Back to Our Roots
I Love lots of herbs. My favorite, of course is probably your favorite too…Cannabis.
Cannabis is my favorite herb for many reasons. The first most obvious, would be it’s side affect of getting high. The rest of my reasons would include cannabis’s medicinal and life sustaining properties. The cannabis plant, in it’s variety of forms can; feed us, clothe us, give us shelter, heal us, light our way and provide us with a safe inebriation.
As we go through these articles, we are going to concentrate on healing and using the whole plant…roots and all.
Cannabis can be used in it’s raw form as in juicing the leaves and buds. Dr. William Courtney successfully treated his wife’s Systemic Lupus by juicing. Dr. Courtney says that by not heating the leaves or buds gives us all the nutrition and medical benefits of the plant.
Juicing requires allot of leaves per day, 15 to 20 from mature, flowering plants. He recommends using fresh ground bud and eating cannabis as part of your diet too. He recommends starting out with 1-3 mg fresh ground buds and increasing up to 10-15 grams per day in addition to 30 grams of fresh leaves.
One downfall with juicing is the amount needed. Dr. Courtney states that “it is great because we use non-psychoactive cannabinoids, but that we actually saturate the body, facilitating its regulation.” He believes this reduces your cancer risk and prevents heart attacks and insulin dependent diabetes.
Most of us use heat in one way or another to medicate with cannabis. From igniting to blasting with volatile solvents. I hope to have fun with this guide. I’m not an expert, doctor or guru. While self medicating with this wonderful herb and others, I like to share the things I’ve learned and learn from you. After all, isn’t that why we are all here? I won’t get very technical or scientific, except when need be for safety or absolutely necessary.
My excitement with the medicinal properties of cannabis came in my early 50’s when a blister like growth on my back ulcerated. After trying several other homemade treatments that while attacking the cancer, also harmed the good cells in the surrounding area. not only went to work destroying the cancer sells, but it soothed the area damaged by the other treatments I had used. The more I researched cannabis the more I saw of what it can do for you. Not only when you are sick or dieing, but in everyday health for every human body.
The first cannabis salve I ever made was very crude. Vaseline with a full melt hash. I was surprised at how easy it was and how many of us are being successful in our own kitchen without a bunch of fancy equipment. Considering how easy it is, it is just as complicated. Things like decarboxylation and is it necessary.
Check out a good tutorial on decarbing by one of our founding members, JM https://www.autoflower.net/forums/threads/decarboxylation-of-cannabis.15194/
Decarbing is the process of heating the acids inside the trichomes in order for them to pass the blood brain barrier. Igniting cannabis in a joint, pipe or bong provides ample heat to decarb and allow you to enjoy the psychoactive affect. Vaporizing heats without incinerating the herb and is considered a safer alternative to smoking as are edibles, oils and topicals.
This chart shows that heating cannabis to a maximum of 293ºF (145ºC) for 7 minutes gives you your maximum THC in your herb.
A general rule of thumb is if you will be ingesting cannabis and want a psychoactive affect you’ll need to decarb.
I decarb for topicals which have nothing to do with getting you high however you may test positive on a drug test. When I decarb, I always do so in an oven or toaster oven. I use a glass pyrex pan and seal it with aluminum foil and then put that in a turkey bag and seal that. My reason is to not let the terpens and flavonoids fumes escape. I also let the material completely cool before I open it up.
Now that you have your starting material decarbed, you’ll need a solvent to extract the trichomes. Common solvents are butter, milk, coconut oil (or olive oil), ethanol (grain alcohol), isoprspanol (rubbing alcohol), butane, propane, hexane, acetone and naptha. I won’t be going into the more volatile solvents because its easy to blow yourself up with some of these and I don’t want to be the one that gave you the idea. There are plenty of videos and how to’s if you really want to go there. We will be mainly talking about ways to process safely and with all food grade materials.
Perhaps the easiest infusion to do, in my opinion, is a milk extraction. THC is soluble in the fat that in whole mike or cream. So make sure you are using whole milk. Grind your decarbed buds slightly, you want to make it easy for the solvent (milk fat in this case) to reach all parts of the material, but you don’t want it so small that you get bits of plant matter in your final product. A good starting point would be to use 1/8th of an ounce (or 3.5 grams) to a cup of milk. Place your buds in the milk on the stove and heat to a simmer. Do Not Let It Boil. Stir constantly for 45 minutes to an hour, cool and enjoy! You can now use your canna milk in any recipe that uses milk. It may take a while to get used to the taste, adding chocolate seems to be the favorite in my house.
Making Canna Butter is just as easy! Canna Butter will work in any recipe that calls for butter. We will start with ½ ounce decarbed material for one cup (2 sticks) of butter. Some people insist on adding water, I do not until the straining stage. If you want to add water at this time, it will not demish your final product and may keep you from burning the butter if you get side tracked. Simmer your butter cannabis mixture at a simmer for 2 to 3 hours stirring constantly. Again Do Not Let It Boil. Strain with cheesecloth, nylons, bubble bags, whatever you want to use. For butter and oils I like nylons (knee highs are the preferred) because they aren’t very absorbent and in my opinion, don’t waste as much product. At the straining stage is where I add my water. Remember that cannabinoids are not water soluble and water boils at 212ºF (100ºC) which is too low a heat to compromise the cannabinoids. Pour hot water over your materials while still in your strainer, I use a pitcher that is wider on the top than the bottom. Place into refrigerator and allow the butter to solidify.
Gently warming the sides with your hand will let the “puck” come right out.
Use the butter in any recipe that calls for butter. You may want to watch the temperature in your recipe so you don’t go over 314.6ºF (157º) and evaporate the THC.
AFN has several good recipes to use your Canna Butter in, I hope you’ll check some of them, in the mean time here is one of my favorites, it’s a Paleo recipe from another one of our long standing members DubV (https://www.autoflower.net/forums/threads/paleo-recipes.16607/)
1/4 cup softened/almost melted butter/ ghee / or canna butter
About 20 pitted dates (I just use a whole box of the Champion Dried Fruit dates they sell in Wal-mart)
1/8 tsp powdered stevia leaf extract (optional.. it’s sweet enough without this)
1/4 tsp cinnamon + a little to sprinkle
1/4 tsp salt
1/2 tsp + 1/8 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp vanilla extract
1/3 cup almond meal/flour
1/3 cup coconut flour
coconut sugar (optional)
No need to preheat the oven yet. Pulse the dates in a food processor until chopped, then puree until it turns into a big ball of date paste. Mix the paste and the butter/ ghee together, and slowly add in all other ingredients. Mix until a nice dough forms. Place teaspoon size balls of dough onto an ungreased cookie sheet (makes 24). Flatten the balls of dough. Sprinkle tops with a little cinnamon and coconut sugar, and place in the fridge. Now you can preheat the oven to 330. When the oven is ready (mine usually takes about 10 minutes), bake cookies for 10 minutes. They will appear to be slightly under-done when you pull them out. Let them cool completely on the tray before storing. They are best if kept in the fridge.
I’ll leave you with one more tip if you are new to cannabis. Start out slow, especially with edibles, edibles may take an hour before you feel an affect. I know it’s far too tempting to eat another piece because the affects haven’t been felt yet. Too much too fast can cause rapid heartbeat, nausea, mental confusion or wild racing thoughts, panic attacks and/or paranoia. All of which will go away in an hour or two or after you sleep.
Enjoy and Happy Medicating!
Any statements made by Root are considered general information and discussion about medicine, health and related subjects. The words and other content provided in this article, and in any linked materials, are not intended and should not be construed as medical advice. If the reader or any other person has a medical concern, he or she should consult with an appropriately-licensed physician or other health care worker.