Features // November 19, 2020 // Rachel Burkons

How to Turn Your Thanksgiving Into Danksgiving

How to Turn Your Thanksgiving Into Danksgiving

Since Thanksgiving 2020 may have you virtually passing the gravy to grandma via Zoom, there’s no better time to turn tradition on its head, and explore taking your Thanksgiving from dull to dank! From the table setting to the turkey, there are so many ways you can incorporate cannabis into your Thanksgiving day celebrations. Read on for some inspiration!

The Décor

This one’s a no-brainer: Cannabis leaves and flowers can add special touches to your tablescape! If you’re lucky enough to have access to fresh plant material, leaves and even whole fresh colas make stunning additions, but dried cannabis bud works too. I like to start with a variety of flowers in different colors, sizes, and textures; think oranges, yellows and reds for fall, and add in some filler leaves as needed. Once your base bouquet is complete, tuck in whatever form of cannabis you have on hand; I’ve even used pre-rolls before for a grab-as-you-go cannabis centerpiece. [caption id="attachment_7021" align="alignleft" width="900"] Cannabis leaves and flowers add a special touch to your tablescape. Credit: Rachel Burkons @smokesipsavor[/caption]

The Appetizers

Personally, this is where I like to go heavy on the cannabis experience, because if you time it right, the munchies will kick in right about the time you’re sitting down for turkey. There are a few ways you can approach cannabis infusions for the pre-dinner hour, but I like to start with a CBD punch to offer an alcohol-free, non-intoxicating cannabinoid alternative to the classic chardonnay (see below for a great CBD apple cider recipe). I like to also offer a few varieties of flower to choose from. If you’ve gone with some cannabis floral décor, light that up, or you may arrange a beautifully decorated joint tray to display some smokable offerings. I like to have joints pre-rolled and ready to go to keep things easy during the actual meal, but a nice clean pipe or bong may be used alongside full flower if you prefer. [caption id="attachment_7022" align="alignnone" width="900"] A cheese board decorated with fresh cannabis makes a lovely centerpiece. Credit: Rachel Burkons @smokesipsavor[/caption] If you’d like to infuse your Thanksgiving appetizers with cannabis, the options are endless. I like to start with a nice cheese board, and have found that a soft cheese with no rind – like a goat cheese! – makes for a stunning canvas when decorated with some fresh edible flowers and cannabis leaves. Balance the ripe, bold flavors of cheeses with some sweet and salty fruits and nuts, and match the whole thing with a crowd-pleasing strain like Blue Dream. Drizzle some infused olive oil on fresh mozzarella balls, or brush across grilled halloumi for an easy infused cheese; just be sure everyone knows what’s infused and what isn’t!

The Dinner

Infusing your food with cannabis is easy once you’ve mastered making your own infused oils or butters (see our vegan and classic cannabis butter recipes!), and because so many of our favorite Holiday indulgences call for a healthy amount of oil or butter, your options are nearly endless. Here are a few great ways to incorporate cannabinoids into your feast:Mashed Potatoes: It doesn’t get easier than adding a dollop of cannabutter to a pile of potatoes, but if you’re feeling adventurous, you can try making the infusion with cream. See below for the recipe.Or Pair With: Mashed Potatoes are creamy and indulgent; lean into those flavors with strains in the Cheese family to match creamy-on-creamy. Turkey: This can be as simple as brushing some cannabis oil on your bird after it’s come out of the oven (don’t do this before putting the turkey in, as you don’t want to denature the cannabinoids in a high-heat oven!). However, after spending days agonizing over the brine on your bird, you may want to consider adding some classic herbs – rosemary, sage, thyme – to your infused oil to keep things tasty! As your cannabis oil is infusing over low heat, add some of these herbs in during the last hour of infusion. Strain out alongside the cannabis and serve.Or Pair With: A high-pinene strain like Berry White or Grape Ape will match the herbal notes used in brining and roasting a turkey.Pumpkin Pie: You may infuse the pie itself by using infused milk as in the mashed potatoes, but it’s easier to precision dose if you infuse the whipped cream topping. See below for the recipe.Or Pair With: Something spicy and beta-caryophyllene-driven will match the baking spices in the pumpkin pie and cut through the richness of the whipped cream. Try a Bubba Kush or classic Gelato. [caption id="attachment_7023" align="alignleft" width="900"] A Danksgiving feast for all senses. Credit: Rachel Burkons @smokesipsavor[/caption]

Recipes

Apple Cider CBD Punch

  • 4 cups apple cider or unfiltered apple juice
  • 2 cups orange juice (no pulp)
  • 1 cup pumpkin purée
  • 2 dashes pumpkin pie spice
  • 4 cups good-quality ginger beer
  • CBD tincture dose of your choice

Combine all ingredients in a punch bowl. Use a whisk to thoroughly combine. Add an ice ring decorated with fresh cranberries and citrus. Serve and enjoy! 

Infused Cream

  • 2 cups heavy or whipping cream
  • Amount of decarbed cannabis for desired dose*

*Because cannabinoids are fat-seeking, they will infuse more fully into a high-fat based product like oil or butter. Use a heavy cream to maximize the amount of cannabinoids captured, but expect the dosage to be lower than what you’d capture with an oil or butter (70% versus 90%-ish).Heat heavy cream and decarbed cannabis in a double-boiler over medium-low heat. Be careful not to scald. Let simmer for 2 hours. Use a cheesecloth to strain and remove cannabis flower.

Infused Mashed Potatoes

  • 5 pounds Yukon gold potatoes peeled and cubed
  • 1 ½ sticks salted butter at room temperature
  • 1 cup infused heavy cream
  • Kosher salt
  • Black pepper

Add potatoes to a large pot of salted water; bring to a boil and cook until potatoes are tender, about 25-30 minutes (you should be able to pierce them easily with a fork). Slowly heat infused cream and butter to a low simmer (you may also add herbs like sage and rosemary to the cream). Drain potatoes, and when cool enough to handle, use a ricer to mash potatoes (you may use a masher or stand mixer as well). Slowly stir in infused cream mixture. Season with salt and pepper.

Infused Whipped Cream

  • 1 cup infused heavy or whipping cream, cold
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 tablespoon confectioner’s sugar

Pour cold infused cream into a bowl or stand mixer. Beat in the vanilla extract and sugar until fluffy peaks form. Do not over-work.Follow Rachel Burkons @smokesipsavor