Empanadas, Soup & CBD! An Evening with Pacha

Disclaimer: Please consult with a medical physician when considering the use of any product containing CBD.

When cooking a meal, typical essentials often include marinades, seasonings, and a good cooking vessel. But did you know that CBD can also be added to the ingredient list?

So, what exactly is CBD? The acronym seems to have generated quite the buzz. CBD is now sold in the form of lotions, soaps, gummies, and even water . You name it! CBD, short for Cannabidiol, is a compound that is derived from the cannabis plant. Before you begin to hyperventilate, please allow me to elaborate:

Cannabis comes in the form of both the Marijuana (female) and Hemp (male) plants-Hemp being a cousin of the Marijuana plant. It is, however, important to note that while the CBD compound is found in both plants, there are a few differences. First, the CBD and the THC (delta-9 tetrahydrocannabinol ) compound differ from one another: First, CBD is primarily derived from the Hemp plant. Second, THC, a compound derived from Marijuana, is a psychoactive compound that often results in a mind-altering ‘high’-or-a state of euphoria when an individual smokes or consumes it in food (Johnson, 2018). CBD, on the other hand, differs, as it is not psychoactive, nor does it alter an individual’s state-of-mind when consumed (Johnson, 2018).

Why is CBD so popular, anyways? People utilize products with the compound for a myriad of reasons. Many consumers of the product claim that CBD can promote relaxation, and can help address medical issues, such as anxiety, insomnia, chronic pain, and inflammation (Grinspoon, 2019).

With this being said, in the spirit of showcasing local food systems, I would like to highlight Heather and Tarzan, two local players within Tampa Bay’s CBD industry. Heather and Tarzan (further referred to as HT) are the owners and founders of Pacha. Pacha is a company that produces CBD products exclusively derived from the Hemp plant. When I asked HT about the origins behind the name Pacha, they explained that the term Pacha comes from Pachamama, meaning Mother Earth. Pacha’s products include topical balms, pet treats, oils, and CBD isolates. When producing their products, HT takes pride in delivering high quality deliverables-with an intentionality of honoring Mother Earth each step of the way.

Check out the video, above, if you would like to learn more about Pacha!

For the sake of good food and solidarity, Pacha and The Funky Spork have teamed up, in order to create two mouth-watering infused recipes that contain one of Pacha’s very own CBD oils. We created a two course vegetarian meal. The first dish is a savory baked empanada appetizer. The second dish-the entrée-consists of a spicy corn chowder. While both dishes are incredible stand-alone delicacies, the two go hand-in-hand. As a disclaimer, please feel free to reduce the CBD dosage for either recipe. You can even enjoy without the CBD. It’s completely up to you!

Here is a link to Pacha’s Spicy CBD Corn Chowder: https://www.pachadispensary.com/pages/cbd-recipes
Video tutorial on how to make a two-course CBD-infused Dinner

Want to learn how to make the Baked CBD Veggie Empanadas? Keep on scrolling!

Baked CBD Veggie Empanadas
Ingredients:
·         One 14oz. package of pre-made empanada discs, thawed
·         1 medium bell pepper
·         1 cup fresh spinach
·         1 small onion
·         8 oz. packet baby portabella mushrooms
·         3 cloves garlic, minced
·         2 tbsp. tomato paste
·         2 tbsp. cumin
·         25 mg. Pacha’s CBD oil
·         2 tbsp. cooking oil
·         ¼ tsp. salt
·         1 egg or 1-2 tbsp. melted coconut oil (if vegan)

Directions
1.    Preheat oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit. While oven is preheating, gently open the empanada disc package, and gently separate the discs, and lay them out on parchment paper, or on a lightly floured surface. Set aside.

2.    Dice the onion, bell pepper, and portabella mushrooms into cubes roughly about the size of an inch. Set aside.

3.    In a skillet, heat to medium high, and place cooking oil to let warm up for about 20-30 seconds. Gradually add the garlic, onion, bell pepper, and mushroom. Cover and let the veggie mixture sauté for about 7-10 minutes, or until the veggies lightly caramelize. Make sure to keep an eye on the veggies and stir frequently (about every two minutes).

4.    During the last two minutes of the veggies sautéing, add the spinach mixture and immediately cover and let it sit, until the spinach begins to wilt. Gradually stir in the spinach with the rest of veggie mixture.

5.    After the veggies have been mixed, gradually add in the tomato paste, cumin seasoning, and salt, until everything is well combined. Remove the mixture from heat and let it cool off for about 5 minutes, or until it is warm to the touch.

6.    IMPORTANT STEP: Once the veggie mixture has cooled, gradually add the 25mg CBD oil drops, and gradually stir until well-combined.

7.    Assembling the Empanadas!
a.    Place about two tablespoons of filling into the center of each empanada discs.
b.    Gently fold the bottom half over the mixture, until disc resembled a half-circle.
c.    Gently press the edges with your fingers of each empanada, then seal it by using a fork to make gently indents around the outer edges of each empanada-about a half centimeter from the surface of the dough. Gently pierce the middle of each empanada with a fork, to prevent stuffing from over-steaming the pastries.
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d.    Delicately place each raw empanada in a lightly greased cookie sheet, or over parchment paper. Repeat steps a-e for each empanada.
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e.    (Vegetarian step-if vegan, go to step g)Take your egg scramble into a bowl. Then brush that mixture over each of the empanadas.
f.     (Vegan step) Take your melted coconut oil and brush it over each pastry.
g.    Place your empanadas in the center rack of your oven and bake the pastries for about 20 minutes, or until golden brown.

8.    Enjoy! J

Makes 4 servings (2 empanadas each)

Nutritional Information per serving:
300 calories/ 10.4 grams protein/ 12.5 grams fat/ 38.6 grams carbohydrates/ 3.5 grams of fiber

To learn more about Pacha, visit them at:  https://www.pachadispensary.com/
Instagram: @pachadispensary
Citations:
Grinspoon, P. (2019, June 05). Cannabidiol (CBD) – what we know and what we don’t. Retrieved August 3, 2019, from https://www.health.harvard.edu/blog/cannabidiol-cbd-what-we-know-and-what-we-dont-2018082414476
Johnson, J. (2018, July 27). CBD oil: Uses, health benefits, and risks. Retrieved August 3, 2019, from https://www.medicalnewstoday.com/articles/317221.php
Link, R. (2019, June 06). What Is CBD Water, and Should You Drink It? Retrieved August 3, 2019, from https://www.healthline.com/nutrition/cbd-water
Thompson, D. (2018, May 07). CBD Oil: All the Rage, But Is It Really Safe and Effective? Retrieved August 3, 2019, from https://www.webmd.com/pain-management/news/20180507/cbd-oil-all-the-rage-but-is-it-safe-effective#1

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