Chef Feature: Payton Curry

Payton Curry started familiarizing himself with the restaurant scene as a 14-year-old dishwasher. While his passion for cooking came before his love of cannabis, he’s always viewed the plant itself as a nutrient-rich vegetable with a powerful role to play in our everyday health.

DOPE Magazine: You really express using the whole cannabis plant, how does each part play a role?

Payton Curry: Yes, when I look at cannabis, I look at it the same way I look at a plant called tomato. Tomatoes make beefsteak tomatoes, Roma tomatoes, cherry tomatoes, teardrop tomatoes—you see where I’m going with this. The most common thing behind this beautiful earth is a wonderful process called photosynthesis, the process of converting sugars and starches and vitamin D into beautiful wellness.

Now we have this plant that’s growing and going through these conversions, but something everyone is forgetting about is the root ball. Think about kale or lettuce, they’re a little bit bitter; but if you go to something that’s grown underground, like a carrot or parsnip, you get sugar—because there’s no photosynthesis underground. So juicing those root balls of cannabis is like doing it with sugarcane, it’s sugar that your body can utilize in a manner that doesn’t affect the glycemic levels of the human body. So when I use whole plant, I’m using it for diabetic patients that can’t take in sugars. But what’s happened to us in the cannabis industry is that we don’t completely get it, we’re throwing away the root ball. That’s the heart of this plant and we’re fucking throwing it away in the trash? Utilize the whole thing, squeeze that fucking root ball brother.

DM: Has the use of cannabis expanded your style or expanded your range of what you’re willing to challenge yourself to do?

PC: Yeah, and the beautiful thing about it is, I consume about 112 grams—roughly a quarter-pound—of cannabis every morning. I juice it, and the way it’s allowed me to expand my horizons with cannabis cuisine and cannabis therapy is to trust this vegetable to provide me solely with THCA, something very therapeutic in the mind and something that allows homeostasis in the cell walls and the cell itself. And it does that through the introduction of cannabinoids and different oxygenation methods you wouldn’t find anywhere else.

What cannabis has allowed me to do as a cook, is go from ‘celebrity chef Payton Curry’—something I couldn’t care less about—into someone who is going into someone’s home who isn’t well to introduce this vegetable into their lives in a way that they can trust—introducing the plant as a probiotic so that their stomach can start processing food as real food again. And they can do it through the juicing platform for Crohn’s and colitis, IBS and IBD, and still pass a drug test because there’s no THC in it, it’s all THCA—a different molecule. And as a cook, it is my duty to make sure that I’m serving people the most nutrient-rich food that I can.

Cannabis has allowed me to not just feed people that are here for a birthday or feed people for an anniversary, we are taking hospitality even further thanks to cannabis and we are cooking dinners for those that are dying; that want to go out pain-free, but not zoned out on opiates.

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