The marijuana community must be having a love affair with grandmas. Just as we’re all getting over the cuteness of the 3 grandmas who got high for the first time, we’re being introduced to 91 year old, Aurora Leveroni aka Nonna Marijuana. To commemorate their new series Bong Appetit, Vice gives us a glimpse into the life of Aurora Leveroni an experienced cook who makes her dishes with marijuana. You’re probably wondering why someone her age, who doesn’t partake in the use of marijuana herself would want to waste her time doing this. But she’s a respectable woman who knows marijuana is a very powerful medicine, she even refers to it as “nature’s medicinal leaf”. She only started cooking with marijuana 5 years ago, but saw it’s power years ago after her daughter was in a car accident and suffered from grand mal seizures. To help with the seizures Valerie turned to marijuana. Valerie and her friend seeked out help from her mother to create YouTube videos on cooking with marijuana. By combining forces, Aurora’s cooking and Valerie’s knowledge of making marijuana infused butter they didn’t know they were onto something so special.
Below is a short interview with Aurora, but you have to watch the video. This little old lady is so full of life, she had me in stitches. From knowing #4 of the 10 Crack Commandments: Never get high on your own supply. Okay, maybe she doesn’t know that song, but one can only dream, right? Aurora teaches, host Matt Zimbric her foolproof method for infusing butter with marijuana and walks him through cooking Chicken Pot-cciatore and Gnocchi. We’re also treated to a tour of her secret location in California where her daughter grows the marijuana they cook with. It’s so cool to see someone from an older generation that see’s the magic ways of marijuana. I wish I had smell-o-vision because when they grind up that weed into delicious kief I was salivating. Can we get a kickstarter campaign to make Nonna Marijuana my nonni? (via)
MUNCHIES: When did you first become interested in cooking with marijuana?
Aurora Leveroni: I had about 75 years of experience in the kitchen before I ever decided to experiment with what I call “nature’s medicinal leaf.” I only started cooking with medical marijuana five years ago. Now I use marijuana as an ingredient in order to help those who are ill and need it to heal themselves, like my daughter Valerie, who uses medical marijuana to control her grand mal seizures.
What was the first cannabis-infused food you ever prepared? And how did it turn out?
I was approached by my daughter and her friend Suzanne to make a YouTube video about cooking with marijuana. With their help and guidance regarding how to make marijuana-infused butter, I was able to cook a delectable chicken cacciatore with onions, cremini mushrooms, black and green olives, and a dash of wine. Now I call the recipe “chicken pot-cciatore” and it’s my signature infused dish.
How would you describe the flavor of marijuana, and what have you learned about making that flavor work in your cooking?
Actually, I can’t offer you any information regarding the flavor of marijuana, as I don’t eat it. I only cook with it, so I rely on taste-testers.
To make the infusion, you can use butter, olive oil, or coconut oil (though some patients are allergic to coconut oil, so you must ask). Also, be very careful regarding the amount of marijuana you cook with as it’s a powerful medicinal product. Always start out by using just a little bit and then upping the dosage little by little until you find what’s right for a particular patient.
Have you ever gotten high on your own supply?
No, it’s not for me. I only enjoy cooking with it.
Why did you decide to make a YouTube video?
I knew that with my 80 years of Italian cooking experience and expertise, I could help others incorporate the healing benefits of marijuana into good, nourishing staple foods that I love to prepare with or without marijuana.
How did you enjoy filming an episode of Bong Appetite, including all of the preparation that went into it?
I had so much fun working with Matt, the host, who is not only an excellent chef, but also a very sweet and respectful young man. He’s in his late 30s, and I will be 92 this Christmas Day, so I think I intimidated him a little… we oldies have the propensity to do that, don’t you know? Anyway, I totally loved getting to boss a real chef around in the kitchen, and working with such a young, talented film crew made me forget just how old I really am.
Do you have any secrets for health and longevity?
YES! My generation was fortunate enough to live most of our lives without ever eating foods infused with all kinds of artificial ingredients, preservatives, and other junk. Hence our diets were pure. Then the government decided that our bodies should be protected by preservatives in our food—an idiotic idea. Those of us still around now—in our late 80s and 90s—know we were the lucky ones who ate foods that were as nature intended, instead of letting preservatives destroy our bodies’ natural immune systems.
What should people know about preparing medical marijuana-infused foods for the first time, including how to get the best health benefits and not eat too much?
The amount of medical marijuana one should use is dependent upon the condition of the individual. They must use common sense by starting with a small dosage and slowly increasing until it reaches the right dosage for them.
What do you think of WAMM and Valerie’s work in the medical marijuana movement?
WAMM is a miraculous and extremely well-respected organization, which was founded by my daughter Valerie and her then-husband Michael. By focusing on the needs of patients and caregivers, WAMM provides hope and builds community while offering a safe, organic supply of medical marijuana to patients with a doctor’s recommendation for the treatment of terminal and chronic illness.
Valerie’s father and I have always supported WAMM. And as for my daughter—well, she is and has always been a remarkable young woman. From the time she was a child, Valerie was compassionate and caring. If there was someone who was hungry or in pain or in need, you can be sure that she would bring them to our home, which was always open to strangers—although to her, no one was a stranger. Her father and I were always so proud of this small, young woman whose heart was bigger than her body. And that includes the way she’s helped lead the fight around the world for medical marijuana. (via)