Cooking with Cannabis: Hempseed Oil
Cooking with Cannabis Hempseed Oil is a non-psychoactive form of cooking with marijuana. There are many health benefits of using Hempseed Oil!
Hempseed oil is extracted from the seed of Cannabis sativa, commonly known as marijuana. The preparation used as a psychoactive drug (the highly publicized face of marijuana) actually uses the dried flowers and subtending leaves and stalks, not the seed. Versatile hempseed oil has very low to undetectable levels of any of the psychoactive components called cannabinoids, making it safe to use in a variety of ways. The plant is also very hardy with a natural resistance to pests, which makes it an easy plant to grow organically without pesticides or herbicides. Refined hempseed oil has primarily been used in body care products, but the unrefined oil has an attractive, nutty flavor, which makes it a great culinary alternative to other cooking oils.
Compared to other cooking oils, hempseed oil is quite low in saturated fatty acids. Hempseed oil is considered a super-food because of its high essential fatty acid (EFA) content, substances that we must ingest, since our bodies cannot make EFAs themselves. Hempseed oil has especially ideal ratios of omega-3 to omega-6 fatty acids and gamma linoleic acid. This ratio of essential fatty acids has been shown to improve such skin conditions as eczema, psoriasis, and acne, lubricate arthritic joints, and improve heart health by decreasing cholesterol intake. Hempseed oil is the only culinary oil to contain gamma linoleic acid (GLA), plus it contains highly digestible proteins and a quantity of trace minerals, making hempseed oil one of the most nutritious food oils in use today. It’s of particular use to vegetarians/vegans, as it provides a good source of alternative protein.
Hempseed oil has a light texture and unique flavor that can accent and enhance a variety of foods, including salad dressings, pasta sauces, pizzas, hummus, and vegetable stir-fries. Care must be used during frying, however, since hempseed oil has a relatively low smoke point. With proper precautions and a creative culinary mind, there is no end to the ways in which hempseed oil can be used to produce unique, delicious dishes.
For more about hemp seed oil see The Cannabis Cookbook: Over 35 Tasty Recipes for Meals, Munchies, and More