Should I use wet or dry leaves for cannabutter or when making edibles? In other words, does the cannabis plant material or trimmings have to be dried before using them for cooking?
Well, I would not go straight from the garden to the cooking vessel. You want it at least dry the cannabis enough to break it/crumble it small pieces.
So while a full cure like would do if you intend to smoke it is not absolutely necessary, you will at least want to let it air dry for a few days or even a week or more depending on the humidity in your area.
It is advantageous to get as much moisture out before infusing in butter and oils as moisture can invite mold later on. Yes, there is a technique for making infusions with water , but that’s another topic (check out the link if you are interested in that), but generally speaking, keeping water out is a good idea.
The Importance of Decarboxylation
With fresh material, especially, decarboxylating first is important. That’s because with age and proper curing, some decarboxylation does naturally occur, and more will happen during cooking. But when you are using fresh plant material, none of that will have happened. Also some drying will occur during the process of decarbing.
If you don’t know what decarboxylation is or how to do it check out this link.
So the bottom line when it comes to wet or leaves for cannabutter and edibles is, dry the plant material for best results, but you don’t need to do a full cure. Be sure to decarboxylate, and you are ready to start cooking with cannabis!