THE HARDEST PART about making pot brownies is the math. When you're sitting in your kitchen looking at a jar of bud, a box of butter, and a block of chocolate, the whole project can seem daunting. Fear not: Basic arithmetic and baking skills are all you need to produce your very own edibles.
First, figure out your recipe yield. I make a recipe that produces 28 brownies. Let's say I want each brownie to have 10 mg of THC--the standard dose according to the state of Colorado. Unless you have specific information from your supplier or cause to suspect otherwise, a reasonable assumption is that your bud is about 10 percent THC. (You can determine this more scientifically by buying cheap testing tools online.) 10 mgx 10x28 =2,800 mg, or about 3 grams. My preferred recipe calls for three-fourths of a cup of butter. Which means I should combine one and a half sticks (three-fourths of a cup) of butter with my 3 grams (a little less than an eighth of an ounce) of weed.
But you want to get as much of that THC as possible from the plant material into the butter. After a semiscientific exploration of various techniques, here's my recommendation, inspired by the work of cannabinoid scientist Tamar Wise as described in High Times.
You'll need to toast your cannabis. The fancy term for this is decarboxylation, which converts THCa into THC, the stuff that gets you high. Grind up your pot. If you don't have a dedicated grinder, you can throw it into a small food processor, or just break it apart with your fingers until it is roughly the texture of coarse sand. Spread it on a baking sheet and pop it in a 240-degree oven for an hour. Shake the pan a couple of times during that period to prevent burning. Wise recommends lightly spraying the toasted weed with Everclear when it comes out of the oven to break down the cellulose and maximize the release of THC, but this step is optional.
Next, infuse the butter. You can do this in a slow cooker set to...