(Erik Hansen Photo)
Super pleased and honored to announce that …
Jessica Catalano is our Stoner Girl of Winter 2015!!!!
“Jessica Catalano is a Professional Culinarian and author of The Ganja Kitchen Revolution: The Bible of Cannabis Cuisine published by Green Candy Press. She is a Medical Cannabis and Cannabis Lifestyle advocate who has combined her two loves of food and cannabis into stylish medicated dishes for Medical Cannabis patients. Catalano pioneered the idea of infusing terpenes into cooking and baking via strain specific recipes to elevate the flavors in the edibles she creates. What this means is that she uses specific strains in specific recipes to enhance the flavor profiles of the dishes she constructs. For example, Lemon Kush can be paired with Vietnamese Spring Rolls. By doing this, the Lemon Kush will impart a lemony taste with floral and mint undertones which deepens the flavors in this dish because of the similar taste profiles already present in the ingredients. This also helps patients to understand the importance of flavor profiles in recipes for a more enjoyable experience and how each strain will effect their bodies.
Catalano is a Medical Cannabis patient herself and has extensive knowledge since early 1997 for medicinal purposes. She continues to strive for excellence both in cooking, baking and Medical Cannabis knowledge. Her goal is to help as many Medical Cannabis patients as she possibly can creating a better quality of life for them. She explores the health benefits of cooking with cannabis which when balanced with good nutrition and a healthy lifestyle can help promote a longer and more fulfilling life. She is also a passionate snowboarder and runner who draws upon inspiration from exploring the Colorado Rocky Mountains to fuel creativity in the kitchen.“
Since receiving The Ganja Kitchen Revolution, Jessica Catalano has been a constant source of inspiration for me, both in and out of the kitchen! Jessica is a beautiful person in every possible way and there are so many dope and delicious recipes in The Ganja Kitchen Revolution — I highly recommend it to everyone who adores food and Cannabis. I have witnessed this book entrance and excite both the novice and professional chefs in my life. Jessica has an amazing positive energy that she shares with the world through everything she writes and creates. She is a perfect example of someone who allows people to feel like their best selves, just as the are. Jessica is following her passions, speaking truth and living with love in her heart. I know she will embolden our readers and renew a love of Cannabis, food, life and winter — the season she was born in and enjoys to the very fullest!
Check out Jessica Catalano’s …
Vietnamese Lemon Kush Kief Spring Rolls, French Mixed Berry Kush Compote and Indian Mandala Curried Chickpeas!
All from The Ganja Kitchen Revolution!
Find Jessica and her uplifting words and dishes on Twitter, Facebook & Instagram!
Check out my interview with Jessica Catalano — our Stoner Girl of Winter 2015!
OG: If a 5-year-old asked you what you do for a living, what would you say?
I would tell them that I am a Chef that makes medicine out of one of God’s plants called Cannabis and then adds that medicine to food to heal sick people.
OG: Would you suggest the same 5-year-old follow a path similar to yours?
I would suggest that if the child wants to be a healer and follow the same path, that he/she practice making healthy food first for family and friends, and when he/she gets old enough, that they can start adding the healing herb as an ingredient.
OG: Can you list your passions in order of importance?
My passions all rank in the same number one position as I feel one isn’t more important than the other because they are all important to me with the same weight. I am very passionate about the following: Food, cooking and baking, cannabis, cannabis edibles, normalizing cannabis through food, growing cannabis, fighting and advocating for patient/human rights, writing, using my pen/words as a weapon against oppressors, fighting against female stereotypes, showing compassion and love towards all animals especially sick/injured/stray ones, snowboarding, hiking/running, spirituality, and spending time with my family.
OG: Any advice for women looking for a Cannabis related career?
Follow your heart and passion in life and it will set you onto the correct life path. If you are a woman who specializes in or is passionate about making healing salves and tinctures, then do it. Constantly practice your art and progress yourself. Maybe start a blog about it or write about it in a magazine or start your own brand. If you follow your true calling and stay on your true life path, everything will take care of itself. Trust in the universe and your calling.
OG: Can you talk about a few inspirations and/or motivations for how you live your life?
I find daily inspiration in nature, snowboarding, music, passion in others, the mountains, and animal spirit guides. Therefore I try to live as my true organic self in a very grounded and humbled way. I also know one can never stop learning and I always strive to become the best version of me, in other words, allow yourself to become your future self.
Next to the kitchen, this is my happy place. All this precipitation in Summit is getting me so stoked for winter! #MountainLiving #MountainBabes #ColoRADoGirls #HigherLiving #HighLife #FueledbyTHC #HighCountry #HighSociety #ShredLife #ShredBunny #Snowboarding #Keystone #SnowboardingCulture #KeystoneResort #SummitCounty #ILiveWhereYouVacation #ILoveSnowboarding #PolarBear #WinterWonderland #WinterisComing #Wfayo #ColoradoLiving #ColoRADo #ColoradoGirlsDoItBetter #Pow #Powder #Surfing
OG: Is there something about yourself that you think people would be shocked to know?
I am seriously creeped out by Barn Owls. As a huge bird and animal lover, this puzzles most people. But it is no joke. They look like demented aliens and sound like a screeching harpy, they are just awful! The mere sight or sound of them sends shivers up and down my spine, which will be followed shortly by a “Fu*ck that!” as I make my exit.
OG: Do you remember when you first smoked pot?
Yes, when I was 14 and we had to smoke out of a pop can because my girlfriend couldn’t find her pipe.
OG: How do you feel about Cannabis?
It is one of God’s greatest gifts to this planet. I heart cannabis so much!
OG: Do you have some favourite strains of Cannabis?
I have so many! Here are a few: Red Headed Stranger #6, Grape Ape, Super Lemon Haze, L.A Woman, Strawberry Cough, Alaskan Ice, LSD, Agent Orange, Northern Lights, and Lime Green Skunk just to name a few.
A little bit of that sticky icky. The healing herb of the nation. #MedicalMarijuanaoftheRockies #Dankness #Organic #HighCountry #ColoradoMedical #ColoradoMarijuana #Colorado #SummitCounty #MMJ #AlternativeMedicine #420Lifestyle #420Girls #Weedstagram420 #Weedstagram #SoilGrown #HighAltitude #HighSociety #HigherThoughts
OG: Favourite spots to smoke pot?
Mountain tops, ski slopes, chair lifts, alpine lakes, parking lots, and my backyard by the creek.
OG: Favourite thing to eat when you are high?
I love to devour fresh pomegranates, blackberries, watermelon, chocolate peanut butter cups, fish tacos, baked sweet potatoes with butter/honey/cinnamon, BLT’s, brie/prosciutto/olive platters with fresh baked bread, uncured salami with white cheddar cheese and stone wheat crackers, and anything sweet/salty.
Chocolate Thai #Nutella #Bacon #Croissant. Recipe via http://www.TGKR.co #420Lifestyle #Edibles #MMJ #TGKR
OG: What is your favourite way to spend a day?
Snowboarding with my husband and friends, followed by safety meetings in the trees or chairlift, followed by coming home to make homemade pizza and a fresh salad then sitting by the fire with my love while we devour delicious food, followed by puppy snuggles with our two dogs.
In my household, you get #organic healthy #homemade pizza once a week. Some late night munchies inspired a Rustic Eggplant #Pizza tonight. #NomNomNom #Italian #Nutritious #GoodCalories #GoodCarbs #GoatCheese #Spinach #EggplantPizza #CleanEating #Wholesome #HealthyLiving #CarbMonster #Carbaholic #420Munchies #420Lifestyle #Wfayo #HighCountry #BreadGame #HighAltitudeBaking
OG: Can you talk about the process of finding your writing voice?
I really like to find inspiration in nature and the outdoors for my writing. A lot of times I will take walks or hikes or go snowboarding in the mountains until I find inspiration for my writing voice. Other times I will find inspiration in old books, favorite albums, unique restaurants that locally source their food, or even in conversations with people. Inspiration is all around us, we just need to learn how to listen.
OG: Can you tell us about your writing process please. Coffee? Patting cats? Pacing?
Most definitely coffee! After I have found my inspiration I really like to sit outside by the creek in my backyard. I bathe in the warm sun and cool mountain breeze while drinking black coffee out of my favorite mug. I listen to the water rolling fiercely in front of me, the sound of the wind through the trees, and the soft chatter of birds that hang out with me. Most mornings I still have an edible from the previous night still lingering, so my body is happily relaxed. While I am basking in nature and enjoying my cup of coffee my mind becomes incredibly relaxed. At that point, words begin to just flow and I return inside to write.
OG: Any advice for stoner girls who would like to get a book published?
I had the blessing of being approached by a publisher with a book offer. This isn’t always the case, but it happened because of the blog I started. The Ganja Kitchen Revolution was a blog first before a book where free strain specific cannabis recipes were uploaded weekly. My suggestion would be to start a blog and see where it goes. Then maybe write an outline of a book idea that also includes a chapter outline and book proposal. Send it to places you would like to get published and allow yourself to be open to constructive criticism. If an idea doesn’t work, try another. But I suggest getting a publisher over self-publishing, as anyone can self-publish a book but not everyone can get published.
OG: Advice for stoner girls who would like to freelance for a living?
Freelancing is fun and allows for a very flexible schedule. Contact websites or magazines you are interested in to see about any opportunities. Always stay inspired so that the content keeps rolling.
OG: Advice for anyone who wants to start running?
Running is a commitment and you have to start slow. First, start with intervals of walking and a slow paced jog for a mile. Do this 3x a week. Then move up to a slow paced jog for one mile 3x a week. After that, move up to a fast paced jog 3x a week for one mile. By the fourth week you should be able to run a mile 3x a week. After that, start increasing your amount of days then work on increasing your miles. At that point, you can take on a free training schedule from apps such as RunKeeper to get yourself ready for a 5k or go online to various websites to print out a training program. Whatever your goal is, have fun with it and take it at your own pace! Running is an extremely liberating activity and highly meditative. And lastly, cannabis is a bronchial dilator, so consuming a small edible about 5mg-10mg an hour before running will help you to breathe easier.
OG: What would you say to someone who says they cannot cook or bake?
Never say never! Cooking or baking takes practice as well as passion. So if you have the drive to cook or bake because you love food, know you will screw recipes up and that is okay. Don’t let a disaster deter you from trying again. But if you practice, you will begin to understand errors, things you may be doing wrong, or why a recipe didn’t work, which will help you to master it and be successful.
OG: How important are beauty, money and fashion?
I personally have a penchant for always being presentable, and I like to accentuate my features with makeup and good clothes. But I do not follow the rules of fashion or what someone says is in vogue for the season. I wear what appeals to me, what is classic or unique, and what flatters my figure, regardless if it is in season or not. And I am a huge proponent of thrift store shopping up here in the mountains as super rich people here literally throw their clothes away. Fashion is really arbitrary if you think about it. Don’t get me started on money…haha. You don’t see birds paying for berries found on trees now do you?
OG: How much coffee is too much coffee?
There is no limit on a damn good cup of coffee!
OG: What do you think the best and worst drugs in the world are?
Meth is by far the worst drug in the world. If you actually look at the ingredients, you would be saying the same exact thing. And obviously, cannabis is the best drug in the world, natural and safe.
OG: What do you think the secrets to happiness are?
Learning to love yourself, learning not to get caught up in the rat race, living humbly and as simple as possible, and always remaining grounded in nature.
OG: Can you touch on something you had to overcome in order to get to where you are now?
I had to overcome people thinking I had a “drug problem” because I used cannabis. I have had to constantly educate people on the medical benefits of cannabis and help break peoples misconceptions about the plant. But it is a beautiful thing when someone was once stuck in the mental notion of Reefer Madness and now has let that go because they allowed themselves to open up to the truth.
OG: When do you think women need to be really brave?
I think when they are about to pop out a baby! Some women loose it during child birth because the pain is so insurmountable. I witnessed it both with family members giving birth and when I worked in Labor & Delivery.
OG: What are you most proud of? It can be anything!
My Book, The Ganja Kitchen Revolution: The Bible of Cannabis Cuisine.
OG: What stoner stereotypes do you fully embrace? Are there any that you find offensive or untrue?
I fully embrace being that earth mama who is grounded and in tune with all the elements of nature. I do however find that some people stereotype weed smoking with low IQ which I find highly offensive and untrue.
OG: When you think “stoner girl”–who comes to mind? So many cool a*s chicks! OG: How do you feel about feminism?
I love it! The advocacy of women’s rights for political, social, and economic equality is very important to our society and other cultures. Even in a modern era, women are still suffering injustices and inequality.
OG: What do you think the next wave of feminism will be like?
I think the next wave will be women in other countries who currently have no rights, finally being granted their human rights and freedoms.
OG: Some things you think every stoner girl should see and/or hear?
They should see what it is like to be at 14,000 feet on top of a mountain (whether driving or hiking) and should hear ocean waves while in a foreign country.
OG: Any quotes you’ll never stop saying, to yourself or others?
“You see, I think drugs have done some good things for us. I really do. And if you don’t believe drugs have done good things for us, do me a favor. Go home tonight. Take all your albums, all your tapes and all your CDs and burn them. ‘Cause you know what, the musicians that made all that great music that’s enhanced your lives throughout the years were rrreal fucking high on drugs. The Beatles were so fucking high they let Ringo sing a few tunes.” – Bill Hicks
“Why is marijuana against the law? It grows naturally upon our planet. Doesn’t the idea of making nature against the law seem to you a bit . . . unnatural?” – Bill Hicks
OG: Can you comment on a few women you look up to?
I most definitely look up to my Mother, Older Sister, and Madonna.
OG: Anyone you’d love to work on a project with?
OG: What are three things you would like to be known for?
My passion, pioneering strain specific edibles for taste, and normalizing cannabis through food.
OG: How do you relax when you feel stressed?
I like to go for a run by the lake to decompress.
OG: How many cats are too many cats, for one woman to own?
A woman can have as many as she wants! So long as she takes care of them all and realizes she may not get out much to date if she has over 20 of them.
OG: Can you tell us a little bit about your animal family members?
I have a beautiful Weimaraner Mr. Fritz, a mischievous Jack Shit (Jack Russell Terrier and Shih Tzu) Miss Jenny, and a little dinosaur Cockatiel named Penny Lane.
"I like it better here where I can sit just quietly and smell the flowers". #Ferdinand #FerdinandtheBull #Flowers #ScentlessCamomile #JackTzu #JackRussell #ShihTzu #Terrier #Wfayo #RockyMountains #MountainDogs #MountainLiving #JapaneseDragon #DogsofIG #LittleDragon #MountainSide #ExploreMore #Beautiful #ColoRADoGirls #ColoradoLiving #HighCountry #Adorable #Cute
OG: You have beautiful hair, can you share with us how you care for it?
Thank you 🙂 Natural scalp oil is the way to go for nice hair. I wash my hair with shampoo every two days. Then on the other days I just rinse my hair with warm water and run my fingers from scalp to roots. I started doing this after my hair dresser told me the benefits of this process as it allows the oils from your scalp to take care of your hair the way nature intended. Your hair will still smell fresh but if you feel the need you can drag essential oils through your hair such as rose water to liven it up. The reason people need to do deep oil treatments or deep conditioning is because they have stripped out all the natural oils from their scalp from over shampooing.
OG: Any natural beauty products you can’t get enough of?
I cannot get enough of raw shea and cocoa butter for my face and skin.
OG: What songs always make you dance? Anything dubstep or trip hop or industrial.
(Onya’s recommendations 😉 )
OG: Do you have a favourite song that is about Cannabis?
The Doors “Light my Fire” is my favorite. To me it has a dual meaning of sex and cannabis.
OG: Can you share with us four things you’ve written that mean the most to you?
My book, an article for SKUNK Magazine called “Scooby Snacks” for therapeutic cannabis edibles for pets, an article for Ladybud Magazine “Cannabis And Christianity: Why I Believe Jesus Would Oppose The Drug War” and another article for Ladybud Magazine “Crow Medicine: Exploring Spirituality with Cannabis”.
OG: What do you love most about Winter?
I love how quiet the world becomes especially during a heavy snowfall. It is as if all the chatter of the world is drowned out while everyone seeks refuge in their warm homes. I revel in this time by going for hikes, walks, or snowboarding. The world truly feels like yours where you can really take in the beauty of the season and of your surroundings.
OG: What do you love most about nature walks in the wintertime?
I love the quietness, the stillness except for the wind or snow falling in large clumps off of the pine trees, the animals coming to say hi or leaving tracks in the snow, birds singing in the trees and how the sound of their feathers flapping seem to echo for miles, the crunch of the snow beneath my boots, the cool sharp stinging artic air rushing my lungs, the way the beautiful white crystalline blanket of ice puts the earth to sleep, and the way the trees creak ever so loudly from the cold.
OG: What time of day do you love to go walking the most?
I love to go walking either around 10am or just before sunset during the twilight hour.
OG: Can you share one (or a few) of your favourite memories of meeting animals in the wilderness in during Winter?
One particular day I took both dogs out for a walk through the mountain trails in my backyard. It was late morning around 10ish and it was a bluebird day. No one was on the trail except for us, so we could hear every little sound. I let the dogs off their leads and they began running like a pack of wolves down the trail. The thumps of their paws loosened snow from low pine branches near that trail that created a swirl of glittering pixie dust behind them. We ventured deeper into the forest, and then all three of us stopped as a heavy gust of wind picked up which blanketed us in a funnel of sparkles. The wind died down and the heavy creaking of old trees shifted our attention, almost as if it were beckoning us. We hiked up a small face of the mountain gaining elevation until our feet hit another trail through dense forest. A singular tree began creaking loudly and a few more steps onto the trail revealed a brilliant forest of song. Birds of all kinds were singing happily and flying from tree to tree. Mr. Fritz my Weimaraner began stalking a small group of Ravens that were croaking merrily in the branches. I called to Fritz to knock it off and leave the birds alone, to which he obliged but was not happy about it. The Ravens turned around to look me in the eyes as almost if to say “Thank You”. Their dark ebony eyes were so deep and vast that I felt entranced and Raven was reminding me of his medicine. He let out a big noise then flew off with his flock mates. My attention shifted to a bird I could not see but who was trying to get my attention. His loud and sharp call pierced my ears as he kept flying from tree to tree watching my every move. Each branch blinded my ability to see what he was, till finally I asked out loud “Who are you?” Almost immediately I hear the familiar sound of a Woodpecker drumming a rhythmic familiar noise on the pine tree he was hiding in. “Ah, ha! Hi Woodpecker friend!”, I said out loud. Then he flew past my head and down the trail. I followed suit and we progressed down the trail with the pups. The songs of the forest began to reach an almost deafening beautiful sound as I found we were surrounded by little birds of all kinds. Sparrows, Chickadees, and other small sparrow like birds, in large groups in different areas of the forest singing their hearts out. All the pine trees and aspens were alive with movement of little bodies. The wind picked up again, and I felt as if the energy of the nature spirits of the forest were surrounding us with love and energy. As we began our descent down the trail to head home, a loud Blue Jay called to us. He literally hung from a pine tree with his head dangling while looking at all three of us. The dogs continued down the trail but I paused to look at him. I greeted him and he continued to call while looking at me inquisitively. All of a sudden, another Blue Jay flew beside him, and they both paused to look at me before flying off. When I finally made it down the trail I realized at that point in my life that Raven, Woodpecker, the little sparrows and chickadees, and Blue Jays were calling to me to pay attention to their medicine again.
OG: Your piece Crow Medicine: Exploring Spirituality with Cannabis is very powerful. Do you have any reading recommendations for those who would like to learn more about these topics?
Thank you very much 🙂 I am so happy that you appreciate that. I would absolutely recommend “Messages from Your Animal Spirit Guides Oracle Cards: A 44-Card Deck and Guidebook” by Steven D. Farmer.
OG: Are there any birds that appear in your life during the winter months?
Ravens, crows, Blue Jays, Magpies, Woodpeckers, Red Tailed Hawks, Falcons, and various forms of chickadees and sparrows tend to present themselves during the winter.
OG: Advice for a stoner girl who wants to learn how to snowboard?
Learn from someone that has been snowboarding at least 15-20 years to truly learn the in’s and out’s the first time. And have patience! You are going to fall a lot, but once you master the basic principles you will be incredibly happy that you stuck with it.
OG: Where should stoners visit in Colorado?
Garden of the Gods and Manitou Springs in Colorado Springs, Summit County which is the High Country in Colorado (mountains and ski resorts, also where I live), Aspen, South Park (Yes, from the show), Beaver Creek, Red Rocks in Morrison, for the most mind blowing concert of your life and of course the big city of Denver.
OG: Out of all the places you’ve been–where do you think Stoner Heaven is?
Colorado hands down. Specifically, surrounded by the beauty of the mountains.
OG: What are you looking forward to most in 2015?
I am looking forward to the evolution in the cannabis industry and the new advancements.
OG: What excites you the most about your future?
New culinary frontiers!
OG: What’s next for you?
Another book, more rad magazine articles, and new game changers in the world of cannabis cuisine are definitely next.
Thank you so much for your time and all your thoughtful and inspiring words Jessica!
I can’t wait to buy your next book!!!
Toke it easy everyone!
Check out Jessica enjoying the mountain snow in her SGG Forever Lazy!
(Erik Hansen Photos)