We’ve seen more and more people cooking with terpenes, but we think this should only be done after research and learning how it works – hence our guide here today. If you want to get started, you’re in the right place. You’re going to learn about common mistakes, preserving terpenes, controlling dosage, and more!
Before digging deeper into the cooking, we first want to provide some advice for preserving and storing terpenes. If you can’t preserve them, the whole process will only get frustrating. Primarily, you need to think about exposure to light. Not only should the container be sealed properly, it should stay in a cool, dry place. If possible, control humidity and keep the terpenes at 60%. If mildew develops, it’s only a matter of time before the terpenes are destroyed.
Common Terpene Mistakes
Now you’re able to properly store terpenes, let’s look at a couple of the most common mistakes with preparation and cooking. Firstly, cooking at temperatures that are too high will quickly destroy the terpenes. In fact, the boiling points of some terpenes are as low as 310 degrees Fahrenheit. As soon as you go above this temperature, the terpenes start to boil away. Therefore, the best results come from a slow roast.
Secondly, it’s important to decarboxylate the cannabis when working straight from the flower. If done incorrectly, you actually lose a huge chunk of the terpene content. Before putting it in the oven, place the flower in a glass jar. By doing this, the terpenes actually cling to the sides. If you have the time, it’s much better to decarboxylate at a lower temperature for longer.
Choosing a Strain
So far, we’ve been discussing terpenes as if this is a universal product. Of course, this isn’t the case. In reality, there are a number of different strains and you’ll need to match the strain to the recipe you have in mind. To get you started, here’s a list of compatible strains and foods:
- Caryophyllene – Cooking spices and cloves
- Linonene – Citrus
- Nerolidol – Ginger and jasmine
- Linalool – Lavender and violets
- Myrcene – Tropical notes and mixed herbs
- Pinene – Pine nuts
With one look online, you’re likely to find plenty of other pairings that work well together. If buying through a dispensary, you can even ask the expert and they will advise. Additionally, remember the effects of each strain. For example, Indica will make you sleepy and relaxed while Sativa will make you more alert and ready to entertain for the evening.
Enjoy the Infusion
Normally, the best way to integrate terpenes into your meals is to infuse them with olive oil or butter as part of the recipe. It’s easy to go wrong here and choose the cheapest products available, but we recommend quality when working with terpenes. As mentioned earlier, keep the temperature of cooking low otherwise you risk burning off all the desirable terpenes.
To make your life significantly easier, we recommend creating a huge batch so that you don’t have to go through the process every single time you want to cook with terpenes. Also, don’t think that you can infuse olive oil or butter just before you get started with a recipe. While butter can take up to 24 hours, olive oil can take between four and six hours. Why this long? Because it needs to cool and then set before use.
At this point, you have a better idea of cooking with terpenes. As long as you allow yourself time after the meal to relax and then feel the effects, you’ll be away. Why not continue your research and start cooking with terpenes today?