Where Does It Come From?
Cannabis can be consumed in a wide variety of ways. Concentrates such as shatter and oils prevail as some of the most popular forms of cannabis used publicly in present times.
Fancy dab rigs and vape pens represent a relatively young form of cannabis consumption. Ancient methods remain just as potent and widely appreciated as ever. The most well-known historical cannabis concentrate is hash.
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Hash is made with either dead, dried cannabis flowers and plant material or fresh flowers that have not yet matured.
Records of people using hash date back to 900 CE, when it was popular in the Arabian Peninsula.
Still, this is not necessarily the first place it was ever used since historical records also show the use of this concentrate in ancient India.
Hash is one of the most popular forms of cannabis that exists in the world today.
People have been drawn to this concentrate partially due to the variety of options for consumption.
It can be eaten, infused into beverages, smoked, or dabbed. From what we do know, it is clear that hash has been a prominent part of many cultures throughout history and will remain so into the future.
Where Does Hash Come From?
Hash is, essentially, the precious gold of the marijuana world – as if the cannabis flower wasn’t precious enough as-is. Its full name, hashish (meaning “grass” in English), is Arabic in origin.
Its roots in the Arabian Peninsula reflect its early history, as the widespread use of hash began as far back as 900 CE.
Numerous records exist showing that hash has been in use since long before then, however.
Historians know that ancient Indian farmers would either collect the resin that had accumulated on their hands during harvest.
Secondly, communities would also use hash in the form of “charas,” too, highlighting one of the stark differences in cannabis use in the Eastern vs. the Western world.
In the Western world, hash is typically created with dried, dead flowers using techniques such as those described below.
On the other hand, countries like India create hash with fresh buds. Ideally, the buds would have been at the cusp of maturity by the time they were harvested for consumption. (Source: Leafly; Leafly)
There are a few different ways to use the flower buds to make hash. In all these techniques, the goal is to collect the trichomes of the plant and compress them to develop an incredibly potent product.
These trichomes are small growths on the cannabis plant responsible for storing the precious resin – where the terpenes and cannabinoids are stored. (Source: Science Daily)
Two examples of how to make hash are listed below:
Making Bubble Hash
“Bubble Hash” is just one version of the traditional ice water hash. For this method, you’ll need:
- 4-5 Vinyl bags that can fit into your chosen bucket sizes
- The bags should have a silk or micron screen bottom (these range in size, 25-220 microns).
- 1-gallon or 5-gallon bucket
- Wooden dowel
- Cheesecloth or muslin cloth
- 10-15lbs of ice
- 3-4oz of cannabis
Once you have all the necessary items, follow the steps below to create your bubble hash. (Source: RuffHouse Studios)
- Using your vinyl bubble bags, line the bucket with your screens, starting with the smallest size first, progressing in size until you insert the largest bag.
- Fill the top bag with your cannabis.
- Pour the ice into the top bag to cover the cannabis.
- Note: This step is critical for the ice water hash. The ice helps to lower the temperature of the cannabis so that the trichomes freeze. This causes the trichomes to become brittle, ultimately rendering them so weak that they break off.
- Pour enough water to cover the cannabis underneath the ice. (Tilt the bucket to verify that you’ve poured enough water.)
- Mix up the cannabis and the ice using your wooden dowel to agitate the cannabis and ensure that the trichomes are being separated. As they break off, they mix into the water and fall through the micron screens, ultimately down to through the smallest filter, when the trichomes will become isolated.
- Let the bags sit for approximately 45 minutes.
- Remove the top (biggest) screen.
- Start removing the bubble bags, gathering the THC (tetrahydrocannabinol) and plant material from each screen with your spoon.
- Place each collection of hash onto your cheesecloth. Once all are collected, compress them inside the cloth to remove all the water.
Creating Dry Sift Hash
This is a much simpler (and faster) method of creating hash. As you’re preparing to make dry sift hash, make sure to stock up on the following tools and ingredients:
- Micron screens of varying sizes
- A box
- Large sheet of paper
- Cannabis (you can use the plant material for this, as opposed to the flower)
That’s it! This technique is much more accessible to people since it requires hardly anything but your cannabis. This simplicity carries forward even into the processing of making the cannabis concentrate (Source: High Times):
- Layer the micron screens in decreasing size from top to bottom. This can be done in various ways, including layering them all together or as removable components positioned one above the other. (You can remove the individual screens when using a specially designed dry sifting box.)
- Break up your cannabis on the top screen (this step works best with frozen cannabis).
- Agitate the cannabis by either breaking it up with your hands or brushing it back and forth with a card.
- Collect the hash.
The Popularity of Hash Over the Millennia
The use of hash has exploded throughout history. Cultures all over the world have become enamored by this form of cannabis, especially in Europe.
Although mystery surrounds the history of the cannabis plant, we know that the plant was a staple crop throughout many countries, largely due to its multifaceted uses – hash being just one. (Source: History)
Throughout the millennia, cannabis has been used in many cultures, Eastern especially, as a medicinal, ceremonial, and recreational herb.
But hash specifically is attributed to Arabia due to the innovative ways in which they used the concentrate.
At the infancy of its popularity in 900 BCE, as mentioned earlier, hashish was being eaten more often than smoked.
Some historians believe that European infatuation with hash began in the early 1800s when Napoleon’s troops were exposed to it during their time in India.
With French, Indian, and Irish doctors beginning to tout the health effects of the cannabis derivative, public interest grew as to what this substance was and how they could use it.
Interest continued to grow worldwide into the present day, with the substance still being used in all sorts of medical, leisurely, and ceremonial contexts.
Although cannabis is, unfortunately, still illegal in many places, public interest and use of the plant begins to grow, and hash continues to lead as one of the primary forms in which it is enjoyed. (Source: Advanced Holistic Health; European Monitoring Centre for Drugs and Drug Addiction)
Hash, or hashish, as it is known traditionally in Arabic, comes from isolating the cannabis plant’s resin through various methods.
This process yields a product that contains high concentrations of THC. It can be consumed as either an edible or through smoking.
Hash was first recorded in the Arabian Peninsula and India, where ancient farmers would collect the resin of native cannabis plants on their hands or cultivators would create “charas” from fresh flowers.
Now, the concentrate is used worldwide and continues to bring users the desired psychoactive effects with greater efficiency to this day.