What is POTKA, and how do I make it??
POTKA: the miracle beverage
OK folks, here is my recipe for an alcoholic beverage, which I have dubbed “POTKA”. This faq describes a process which may seem long and inordinately complex. I can say with utmost certainty that ALL the hassle is very much worth it. If you like ingesting THC via the G-I (gastro-intestinal) tract, and enjoy the finer, epicurean things in life, read on. This is a result of 16 yrs professional cooking as a chef and much research.
How do I make it?
The best way to make Potka is to have access to fresh (same day) \"A\" trim, preferably from indoor grass. Fill a mason jar 3/4 with loose-packed wet trim. Try not to handle it as much as possible, as you lose resin on your hands. Pour enough 94% grain alcohol into the mason jar to fill it 1/4-1/3.
Close the jar, and shake like a martini for 5-10 min, until the booze turns a light straw to very pale green color. Pause in your shaking every 90 seconds or so, and check the color by holding the jar up to the light. As soon as you see any green tinge, run the whole mess thru a coffee filter into a second mason jar. Close tight.
You can drink the wash as is, or cut it 50/50 with water to bring it to a drinkable %. But BEWARE. Straight wash is very, very strong, and very soporific. The first time I tried some, I drank 2.5oz and smoked a 0.3 of oil. It took me 2 HOURS to get of my couch and go to bed once my movie ended!! So I have modified the recipe to prevent coma and brain death as follows.
How do I prevent major couch-lock and coma?
In order to counter the boot to the head effect of the straight wash, I use a blend of herbal stimulants. For 8oz of 94% booze, use the following: 2 sliced dried red ginseng roots, 2-4 cinnamon sticks, 3 cloves, 1/2 Gotu Kola(opt.), 1/2 oz sarsaparilla (opt), 1/8-1/6 cup black ground coffee or yerba mate. Put all the above into a mason jar with the 8oz of booze. Add 3 oz water, place jar in a pot of water on the stove with the cover on loose, and heat up. The mix will boil before the water does. Let it boil for 20-30 minutes, run thru a coffee filter and cool in a sealed container.
Blend the herbal extraction with the wash 50/50, sweeten with honey or maple syrup and store as is. Dilute it with water 50/50 WHEN YOU ARE GONNE DRINK IT, as the oil tends to separate out if the booze contents are less than 80%. So keep it at 94% and dilute as needed, and give a good mix when you drink it. Drink like a shooter, and chase with something sweet. Ideally your stomach should be empty for 3-4 hrs previous.
The cinnamon acts as a vascular dilator, and expedites the absorption of everything else, esp. the sugars, with jumpstart your metabolism and get your belly ATTACKING the alcohol therein. The THC is in solution, so passes the stomach blood barrier very quickly with the booze. The end effect is a shot of booze that you feel the THC within FIVE, count \'em FIVE minutes. The longest I\'ve seen it take to hit someone is 9 minutes. But the ginseng, Gotu and caffeine keep you up and moving, so you can do more than couch-surf and drool. Not to mention the cinnamon, with dilates all your capillaries and hyper-oxygenates your blood (more energy!!)
What if I do not have fresh trim?
If you don\'t have fresh trim, take dry \"A\" trim, mulch in a Cuisinart to medium fine. Use 2 grams for every Oz of 94% booze. Put the two in a mason jar with 2oz water, and proceed like desribed above for the secondary herbs. 20-30 minutes mellow boil, coffee filter and cool. It works, but does not have the same floral, fresh bud harvest taste that you get with wet trim. It tends to get greener and swampier tasting.
You can also use buds, I suggest 1-1.5 grams for every OZ of booze, instead of 2 grams.
Would it be any better if you leave the trim to soak in the alcohol for longer, or would that just make it taste bad?
It depends if you are using fresh or dry trim. The concept is to strip the resin with the booze, without letting any of the chlorophyll or tars get in the mix. This is easier with fresh trim or bud, as the resin glands are still wet and have not encapsulated yet. Therefore 5-10 min washing with 85-94% booze does the trick. When dry, the hot method is best for getting your money\'s worth, but needless to say tastes swampier.
Do I have to make a whole bottle?
Nope, if you want to do a test, try the following:
Take an airplane bottle of Vodka (50ml), take a wee sip, just to make some room. In it put: 2 grs mulched \"A\" trim ot 1 gram buds), 1/2 a cinnamon stick, 1 clove, 1 grs ginseng and 1 tsp coffee grounds. Put the top back on loosely, and put in a pot of water on the stove. Heat till the water steams lightly for 25 min. Cool to room temp, run thru a coffee filter. Sweeten to taste and drink like a shooter on an empty stomach. Chase with something sweet, and then enjoy. That\'s a way of trying it out without blowing a big stash.
Won’t cooking it evaporate all the alcohol?
The cooking is done in a SEALED mason jar, so as it boils, the booze re-circulates, and you lose none. I say to cool it before opening and straining for the same reason, to prevent gas-off of the booze. Food grade ethanol is expensive here in Canada (48$ a liter!!!), so until I can brew my own, I treat it like gold. It costs me more than the pot!
Heating up the booze makes it more aggressive of a solvent, and helps strip the THC.
Does the alcohol extract the THC from the plant tissue, or are the trichomes just removed from the surface like with Bubblehash?
There is very little THC in the veggie matter of pot. Almost all is on the surface in the form of resin glands. When they are wet (fresh) they dissolve in the 94% very quick, hence no heat is required. Once the \'cromes dry up and encapsulate, heat helps the whole process.
You could just leave it soak for a day or two, but that would let the booze attack the dried plant matter itself, and you end up with a green, swampy drink. It stones just as good, but tastes less flowery.
Are the Other Herbs there just for taste?
The secondary herbs I use are not just for taste. In fact, none of them were selected for taste, but for their herbal stimulant qualities. It just so happens that one of the best natural vascular dilators is Cinnamon. Ginseng we all know about, and Gotu Kola and Sarsaparilla are great too. Yerba Mate is a South American tea that has Matiene in it, as strong as caffeine, but less harsh on the system and belly. All of this is vital, as the drink can lead to THC coma and phase-out if there is nothing in it to keep you UP.
Another idea I\'ve had is to add Yohimbine extract to the Potka, for evenings of great sexual endeavor. The aphrodisiac qualities of ginseng and cinnamon are well known, but combined with Yohimbe extract and whacks \'o THC, it would make for quite the bevvie indeed.
Should I try to rinse/wash the trim of water-solubles, like I do for Cannabutter, to improve the taste?
I wouldn\'t bother with the rinsing with water, you\'ll just lose a lot of your potential actives. If you have a lot of trim to deal with, you can do the same process with tumbled trichromes instead of the leaf itself. I use a manual horizontal axis tumbler with 125 stainless screen that I built myself. you can tumble out a lot of \'cromes with such a box. I wouldn\'t worry about rinsing, if you heat it gently and watch the color as it\'s going, you can avoid the schvampwasser taste. The cinnamon etc. also goes a long way to mask it, if you do let it go a bit longer. And hey, you may not mind the taste too much.
Handling the Trim
I recommend not handling the trim, buds, grass etc. anymore than you have to, wet or dry. The loss via over handling is more than you think.
I once did a test with the butane process. I pressed an ounce of trimmed, dried White Rhino (really primo, cleaned very well). I got 3.7 grams of crystallized oil. (see my post on gassing out for the method of crystallizing). Then I pressed an ounce of the same grass, from the same plant, but this oz had just had the fan leaves taken off, while being held only by the stem. Any material that had visible white frosties was not touched. That ounce yielded 5.4 grams of resin, same quality as the other ounce. This leads me to recommend that if you are growing for resin, do NOT clean or handle your dope any more than is absolutely required.
It lasts a LONG time. Drink it at 7-8 pm and you wake up totally baked the next day.