Bhang is one of the oldest pot-infused edible recipes of all time. It is milk-based cannabis beverage that has been used for thousands of years. There are even old mythological stories praising the drink. Bhang still plays a role in modern Hindu culture. Some people drink it during religious holidays like Holi. Today, you can find bhang in Indian shops with government authorized permits to sell for religious purposes.
The literal translation of the word is the flower heads of cannabis. Flower tops in female cannabis plants have more THC than the other parts of the plant. A text from 1200-1000 B.C. describes bhang as a beneficial used to relieve anxiety.
The drink is associated with the Hindu god Shiva. In one legend, the Hindu gods are weakened from battle with demons. As a result, they seek the advice from one of the most important gods in the Hindu pantheon, Vishnu.
Vishnu instructs them to prepare the “amrita” or elixir of immortality. First, he tells them to “cast into the Milky Sea potent herbs, then take Mount Mandara for churning.”
It read like a recipe for the world’s largest batch of bhang. During the churning, several things were released including a poison that could destroy the world. That is when Shiva stepped up and drank it, poisoning himself instead. Fortunately, “Shiva on fire with the poison churned from the ocean was cooled by bhang.” Shiva devotees still drink bhang.
Religious bhang is supposed to be brought from the Himalayan mountain range. The Himalayas are home to Mount Everest, the mountain with the highest elevation above sea level. Cannabis is brought from the Himalayas to symbolize that it is a gift from the gods above. Making it into bhang and drinking it is supposed to bring one closer to the gods.
Despite bhang being sold for religious purposes, many tourists have had a taste and gone home to talk about it. Now the drink is known worldwide. The best time to visit India and try bhang is during the 2-day Holi Hindu holiday.
You won’t need to make cannabutter or any cannabis cooking oil before starting the process. However, you’ll need the following tools and ingredients.
- 2 cups water
- 28g of cannabis buds
- 4 cups of warm milk
- 2 tablespoons chopped almonds
- 1/4 cup ginger
- 1/8 tsp garam masala, cinnamon, and cardamom
- 1/2 cup honey
- 1 tsp rosewater
Start by filling your pot with water and putting it on a stovetop to boil. Next, place cannabis buds into the pot and remove it from the stovetop. Then, place a lid on it for five to ten minutes.
Next, grab the strainer or a muslin cloth to separate the plant matter from the liquid. Then warm up the milk and add two teaspoons of it to the mortar with the strained weed.
Use the pestle to grind the milk and weed together slowly. Continue adding two teaspoons at a time while grinding until you’ve used half a cup. Strain the weed from the milk and set the milk aside.
Add almonds and warm milk to the mortar and grind until you’re left with a fine paste. Squeeze the paste and collect the extracts.
Take all liquid ingredients including the water that was used to boil the plant matter. Add the garam masala, cinnamon, ginger, cardamom and rosewater. Finally, top it with as much honey or sugar as you want with the remaining warm milk and mix it all up and you’re done.
Final Sip: What Is Bhang?
Bhang is a cannabis-infused drink that people have been using to elevate spiritually for thousands of years. It’s a spiced drink that can be enjoyed during a trip to India or made at home.