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Cooking with cannabis has come a long way since your mom’s pot brownies

A platter of various foods
Gigi Diaz
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Chef Gigi Diaz of Detroit is bringing cannabis-infused food and drink to marijuana enthusiasts and newcomers alike.

Cannabis, it turns out, is not just for smoking.

Since its legalization for both medical and recreational purposes, marijuana has been making its way into kitchens across Michigan, including the kitchen of Gigi Diaz. 

Diaz has been cooking professionally for years and recently, she’s started making cannabis-infused meals. She even won Best Chef at the 2017 High Times Michigan Cannabis Cup. Her business, Cannabis Concepts, does regular pop-ups all around Detroit.

“It’s really come a long way since your average pot brownie,” Diaz said.

Diaz says she’s always been interested in the wide range of ingredients that can be used in cooking, including medicinal ones. When it came to cannabis, she felt it was important to offer alternative ways of ingesting marijuana, ones far different from the age-old pot brownie or gummy.

In her kitchen, Diaz cooks with ingredients derived from the marijuana plant that have a range of properties. She uses hemp in addition to CBD and THC oils. CBD, or cannabidiol, is an ingredient associated with pain and anxiety relief among other medical uses. THC, or tetrahydrocannabinol, is the psychoactive substance that causes users to feel “high.”

“We want to think about people who have different dietary needs, and also people who are also using it to heal themselves,” Diaz said.

Listen to Stateside’s interview with Gigi Diaz to hear what brought her to the world of cooking, some of her most popular cannabis-infused dishes, and what she thinks marijuana legalization in Michigan will mean for her business.

This post was written by Stateside production assistant Isabella Isaacs-Thomas. 

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