Leaves are falling and a cool autumn breeze is in the air – a telltale sign that the holiday season is right around the corner. It’s an occasion for spending time with friends, family and loved ones sharing stories of the summer, giving thanks, and indulging in tasty bites.
Growing up in Cape Breton, Nova Scotia, our family celebrated most holidays with a traditional roast turkey along with the infamous side dishes of mash potatoes, carrots, and pan gravy usually followed by the notorious turkey-induced nap session. The exact cause for drowsiness after consuming turkey, commonly associated with an amino acid called tryptophan, can be debatable.
There are some natural terpenes like linalool (found in lavender) and myrcene (found in mangos) that are present in foods we already consume and are known to have sedative, relaxing qualities. Terpenes are an important factor in selecting cannabis for medical or recreational use as they can influence the effects of cannabis due to the entourage effect.
One of my culinary traditions is to roast a not-so-traditional whole chicken switching out herbs, spices and cranberries for fresh mango and exotic spices to provide sweetness and acidity. Roasting a smaller sized poultry makes a festive meal without having leftovers for days.
Traditional poultry seasoning can be bought in most grocery stores containing a typical blend of sage, thyme and marjoram. These strong aromatic herbs can overpower the flavor of the stuffing and possibly the rest of your dinner plate. This recipe is for an untraditional chicken stuffing containing some of my favorites terpenes and the result is a fresh fruity, sweet and sour stuffing with a touch of spice.
A few terpenes highlighted in the Mango Green Chili Cannabis-infused Stuffing recipe are:
Borneol: Found in ginger and has herbal woody notes. While ginger powder is nice, I am going to use dry galangal – a type of Thai ginger that has spicy citrus notes. This is used to accent the notes of limonene by adding bit more fresh flavor.
Myrcene: One of the more well-known terpenes as its commonly found in mangos and lemongrass. Mangos are great for adding sweetness, moisture and a hint of bitterness. When they are perfectly ripe they have a beautiful yellow-orange flesh and ultra smooth, silky texture.
Pinene: Commonly found in herbs like dill, sage and rosemary. Fresh rosemary provides a semi-sweet savory taste to your stuffing without being too overpowering.
Caryophyllene: Found in black pepper. Black pepper is a staple in most kitchens and gives a spicy fruity kick to your recipe. Try grinding it fresh for maximum flavor.
Makes approximately 3 cups stuffing – enough for an average sized fryer-style chicken.
Preheat oven to 350F to semi-dry the bread.
You will need:
1 cup minced onion
1 tsp chopped garlic
½ tsp sea salt
2 tbsp coconut oil (infused with a strain high in limonene, terpinolene, caryophyllene, and pinene equivalent of 20mg)
1 tbsp fine chopped ginger
¾ cup diced mango fresh
¼ tsp galangal powder or dry ginger powder
¼ green chili or mild red chili pepper powder
¼ tsp chopped fresh rosemary
¼ tsp freshly ground black pepper
3 cup diced bread
2 tbsp infused olive oil
You will want to chill the cannabis stuffing until completely cool before placing inside the chicken, as this will promote even cooking. I always like to make mine the night before so it can refrigerate overnight – this also helps out with meal prep for the next day.
Health Canada recommends cooking your whole chicken to an internal temperature of 82C or 180F. Use a temperature probe to ensure proper internal temperature is achieved. Once the proper internal temperature is reached, tent or cover your roast prior to serving. This helps the juices settle down, dispersing throughout the meat’s proteins resulting in a more tender, juicy roast. You can tell you have achieved tenting bliss when you cut your roast and all the juices do not flow out on to your cutting board.
I am thankful for family, friends and terpenes. I am also thankful for sandwiches, and the classic club sandwich of roast chicken, bacon, tomato, and lettuce is one of my favorites. Continuing the not-so-traditional recipe I will swap out the bacon and substitute smoked avocado faux “bacon” and a sweet, tangy tomato ginger jam. The avocado is prepared in similar style to that of making bacon with a short marinade in brown sugar and salt.
1 ripe avocado
½ tsp brown sugar
½ tsp salt
Dry cured cannabis fan leaves or cannabis flower
*Cannabis doses vary based on personal preference. This dose is not a recommendation on behalf of Zenabis. For more information on dosing, remember to “start low and go slow” and see Health Canada’s Consumer Information fact sheet for guidance.