‘Bong Appétit’: A Recipe Book for the True Ganja Gourmet

Bong Appétit has evolved into a stoner chef contest with Cypress Hill’s B-Real as the show’s new host. Season 3 episodes are currently airing Wednesdays at 9 pm ET on Viceland. Below is a review of the Bong Appétit book by the editors of Munchies with Elise McDonough.

With the popularity of the Food Network and celebrity chefs and culinary competitions such as Top Chef and Master Chef, the American public’s appetite for food cooking information has never been higher. Bong Appétit, the Viceland show this book is based on, carries that obsession into the world of cannabis.

Despite the interest in food shows, studies indicate that Americans are spending less and less time in the kitchen. A 2014 report from the market research firm NPD Group noted that, since 2001, fewer than 60% of dinners eaten at home were actually cooked there.

The takeaway is that the shows are more aspirational than practical, which, for most people, will be the case with this book. They’ll drool over the mouth-watering photos and dream about infused recipes like Brown Butter Gnocchi, Double Lemon Roast Chicken, Pakalolo Poke Bowl and Honey Rosemary Ice Cream and how awesome it would be if someone else made and served them. They’ll surely keep Bong Appétit prominently displayed on their coffee tables as a fun conversation starter.

The point is not to get super high, but rather to create a cannabis-infused, fine-dining experience in which the marijuana flavor enhances the food.

For casual edibles users or beginner cooks who don’t consider themselves “foodies,” a lot of the recipes might be over their heads and/or interest levels. But the knowledgeable chef will enjoy pushing the boundaries of their cannabis cooking repertoires thanks to the information and photos provided.

The instructional chapters (the first 60 pages) tackle complex background information, procedures and science in an easy-to-understand way. Budding canna-gourmets will find the sections about matching cannabis and food flavors and terpenes especially helpful in elevating their cooking beyond the realm of masking marijuana’s flavor to using it as an integral culinary ingredient. Armed with this knowledge, creative cooks can confidently soar off on their own to concoct new cannabis culinary masterpieces.

OGs may scoff at some of the low doses, many under 5 mgs THC per serving, suggested in the recipes chapters (the rest of the book). However, the point is not to get super high, but rather to create a cannabis-infused, fine-dining experience in which the marijuana flavor enhances the food. In that context, low doses make a lot of sense, especially if you’re creating an infused-dinner party menu. The section on dosing explains this complicated subject so well, you’ll confidently know how to adjust the recipes up or down for your individual needs.

The book’s tone matches the show’s young, urban hipster vibe, but the content is serious and sophisticated enough to appeal to gourmets of all ages. The recipes cover a wide range, including infused cocktails, appetizers, salads, side dishes, pastas, grains, meat, poultry, seafood and desserts. Chefs hoping to incorporate cannabis into their services will find no better guide.

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Author: Cheri Sicard