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Great British Bake Off star’s recipe for CBD mince pies 



Great British Bake Off star Howard Middleton is putting a green twist on Christmas this year, with his new CBD-infused mince pies.

The recipe for this Christmas treat includes the use of hemp flour, added CBD oil and an optional hemp-style frosting.

Howard first hit fame when he appeared on the 2013 series of the popular cooking show Great British Bake Off, where he caught viewer’s eye with his unusual set of ingredients and recipes.

The cook even introduced the show’s judges to hemp flour and has since gone on to release his first book ‘Delicious Gluten-Free Baking’.

He spoke about how his unorthodox style helped shape this recipe.

“I love to experiment with my baking to cater for those with intolerances and people who like to try alternative ingredients and new flavours,” Howard said.

“With so much time spent inside this year, home-baking has been on the rise and I hope people will give my tasty twist on a mince pie recipe a trial in their kitchens.

“The recipe calls for hemp flour, coconut flour plus hemp oil and water from a can of chickpeas so your gluten-free and vegan friends can enjoy it, too.

“I like to show that it’s possible for ingredients to be inclusive and delicious. For adults who want to include CBD oil, there is an optional measure of 10mg for each pie.”

CBD use is on the rise in the UK, with around six million adults in the country having now tried the supplement.

The recipe was created in collaboration with and the company’s wholesale manager Jonathan Thorpe, a former chef himself, spoke about how happy he was to help create the dish.

“The mince pie recipe he has created is simply show stopping – and your gluten-free and vegan friends can enjoy them too,” Jonathon said.

“Howard is a hero of ours thanks to his attitude in the kitchen, working with a variety of different ingredients to suit individuals’ dietary requirements and tastes. 

“For adults who want to add CBD oil to their cooking, we supply high-quality products to consumers in the UK. Each product is verified in independent labs and subject to full spectrum analysis to verify CBD content.”

Actively CBD provides a range of hemp products, from drinks and chocolate to essential oils.


See Howard’s full recipe for his CBD mince pies below:


For the pastry

75g plain gluten-free flour, plus extra for rolling

20g icing sugar

10g hemp flour

15g coconut flour (or replace with more plain gluten-free flour)

25g ground almonds

A half pinch of salt

⅛ tsp gluten-free baking powder

65g cold vegan butter substitute, cubed (or you can use a mix of this and hard coconut oil)

½  tsp grated orange or lemon zest

¼  tsp ground cinnamon (optional)

3 – 4 tbsp orange or lemon juice

For the filling

12 tsp mincemeat (suitable for vegans and gluten-free)

For the frangipane topping

2 tbsp hemp oil

90g caster sugar

3 – 4 tbsp aquafaba (drained water from a can of chickpeas)

150g ground almonds

½ tsp almond extract

 A handful of flaked almonds

To finish

Icing sugar

A little green food colouring

10mg full spectrum CBD oil from (optional)


  1. To make the pastry, put the flours, icing sugar, ground almonds, salt and baking powder in a mixing bowl and rub in the cubes of vegan fat (or you can pulse in a food processor).
  2. Stir in the zest and cinnamon, then stir in the juice and bring the dough together until it forms a smooth ball.
  3. Roll out on a floured surface (it’s easiest to do this in batches), then stamp out circles using a 7cm cutter and ease these carefully into a 12-hole shallow tart tin. Chill in the fridge or freezer, whilst you make the frangipane topping.
  4. Preheat the oven to 190°C/170°C fan.
  5. To make the frangipane topping, beat the oil with the sugar and aquafaba, then stir in the ground almonds and almond extract and mix well.
  6. Put a spoonful of mincemeat in each pastry case, then top with frangipane and level off. Sprinkle with flaked almonds.
  7. Bake for about 15 minutes until the topping is golden and firm and the pastry has browned.
  8. Leave to cool for five minutes in the tin, then remove and finish cooling on a wire rack.
  9. Make a water icing with icing sugar, a little green colouring and water until you have a smooth consistency that’s not too runny. If you’re over and you’ve spoken to a doctor, add in a serving of full-spectrum CBD oil from if you like
  10. Dust the mince pies with icing sugar, then pipe or drizzle over the green icing artistically.


Six big cannabis sector stories you might have missed this week



It’s been another week of big news in the cannabis world.

At Cannabis Health, our in depth coverage of the ongoing growth of cannabis as a medical and wellness product continues

Meanwhile, over at Cannabis Wealth, we’ve been following all the big industry and policy news in a week which has seen some important developments..

Been busy and want to get caught up in a hurry?

Here are the six things you need to read to stay in the loop this week.

1. Reprieve for medical cannabis patients

The Department of Health has reached an agreement with Dutch officials to extend the supply of medical cannabis oils to existing patients in the UK until 2022.

Medical cannabis patients, living with severe, life-threatening epilepsy were left without access to medication when the UK left the EU at the end of last year.

Medical cannabis

Families, whose children are prescribed Bedrocan oils in the UK but must obtain their prescription through the Transvaal pharmacy in the Netherlands, were given two weeks notice that their medication could no longer be dispensed following the end of the Brexit transition period on 31, December 2020.

Read the full story.

2. UK largest’s medical cannabis trial reports back

The first findings from the UK’s largest medical cannabis patient study show quality of life improved by more than 50 percent.

Preliminary results from Drug Science’s Project Twenty21 study, have found medical cannabis significantly improves quality of life for people with life-limiting conditions such as chronic pain, multiple sclerosis (MS) Tourette’s syndrome and post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD).

Published on Tuesday 11 May, the report is the first real-world data to be collected on medical cannabis in the UK.

Read more here.

3. Harrowing first-hand account of medical cannabis user
Diagnosed with a personality disorder and experiencing debilitating anxiety which left him housebound, Craig – whose name has been changed – had exhausted all treatment options and was losing all hope.
He speaks about how medical cannabis helped save his life here.

4. CBD market set to shrink

The UK’s CBD sector looks set to shrink significantly as the roll out of new regulations continues to batter the industry.

The FSA has confirmed to Cannabis Wealth it received applications for 803 different CBD products – but only 42 have been advanced to the next stage of the process so far.

More than half of all applications (445) were ‘incomplete’ and a further 41 have been withdrawn altogether.

Read the full story here.

5. CBD not linked to single doping case

CBD has not been linked to a single failed drugs test in UK sport despite fears about the undeclared levels of THC in some products.

The World Anti-Doping Agency removed the cannabinoid from its banned substances list in 2017 and since then several high profile athletes have publicly endorsed CBD products.

Even though CBD – which has no psychoactive properties – is not banned, the UK Anti-Doping (UKAD) still warns athletes to be cautious with treatments.

Read our exclusive report here.

6. School’s out for cannabis class

The first class on a pioneering university medical cannabis course have concluded their first year of studies.

The research programme at the Humboldt-Universitat zu Berlin examines the medical and nutritional uses of cannabis, production and the legal and economic frameworks of the business.

It’s the latest sign that medical cannabis is becoming a part of the mainstream education offering and a positive indication that new industry leaders will emerge in the coming years.

Full story here.

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Science finds a way for medical cannabis to relieve pain without side effects

Researchers have developed a molecule that allows THC to fight pain without the side effects.



Medical cannabis
Many people living with chronic pain have found that cannabis can provide relief. 

Scientists may have developed a molecule which could allow medical cannabis to provide pain relief without any side effects.

Many people live with chronic pain, and in some cases, cannabis can provide relief. 

But the drug also can significantly impact memory and other cognitive functions. 

Now, researchers have developed a peptide that, in mice, allowed THC to fight pain without the side effects.

According to the US Centres for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) around 20 percent of adults in the states experienced chronic pain in 2019. 

In some studies, medical cannabis has been helpful in relieving pain from migraines, neuropathy, cancer and other conditions, but the side effects can present hurdles for widespread therapeutic use.

Previously, researchers identified two peptides [molecules which are made up of amino acids] that disrupt an interaction between a receptor that is the target of THC and another that binds serotonin, a neurotransmitter that regulates learning, memory and other cognitive functions. 

When the researchers injected the peptides into the brains of mice, the mice had fewer memory problems caused by THC. 

Now, this team, led by Rafael Maldonado, David Andreu and colleagues, has gone one step further to improve these peptides to make them smaller, more stable, orally active and able to cross the blood-brain barrier.

Based on data from molecular dynamic simulations, the researchers designed two peptides that were less than half the length of the original ones but preserved their receptor binding and other functions. 

They also optimised the peptide sequences for improved cell entry, stability and ability to cross the blood-brain barrier. 

Then, the researchers gave the most promising peptide to mice orally, along with a THC injection, and tested the mice’s pain threshold and memory. 

Mice treated with both THC and the optimised peptide reaped the pain-relieving benefits of THC and also showed improved memory compared with mice treated with THC alone. 

Importantly, multiple treatments with the peptide did not evoke an immune response. 

Reporting in the American Chemical Society’s Journal of Medicinal Chemistry, researchers say that these findings suggest the optimised peptide is an ideal drug candidate for reducing cognitive side effects from cannabis-based pain management.

The abstract that accompanies this paper can be viewed here.

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Dutch Government to supply medical cannabis for UK patients until 2022

The Department of Health has reached an agreement to continue the supply of Bedrocan oils



The Dutch Government will supply medical cannabis to UK patients until 2022

The Department of Health has reached an agreement with Dutch officials to extend the supply of medical cannabis oils to existing patients in the UK until 2022.

Medical cannabis patients, living with severe, life-threatening epilepsy were left without access to medication when the UK left the EU at the end of last year. 

Families, whose children are prescribed Bedrocan oils in the UK but must obtain their prescription through the Transvaal pharmacy in the Netherlands, were given two weeks notice that their medication could no longer be dispensed following the end of the Brexit transition period on 31, December 2020. 

After outrage from campaigners, the Dutch government agreed to continue supplying the life-saving products until 1 July, 2021 while a more permanent solution was reached.

This waiver period has now been extended until 1 January, 2022.

Health ministers promised to work with officials in the Netherlands to find a “long-term” solution, but according to those at the forefront of the campaign, there is still “some way to go”.

Hannah Deacon and son Alfie Dingley

Hannah Deacon’s son Alfie Dingley, who is prescribed Bedrocan products for a rare form of epilepsy, recently celebrated one year seizure-free.

In a letter to Deacon on Thursday 13 May, the DofH said it was working with the Dutch government, Bedrocan and the Transvaal pharmacy to proceed as “quickly as possible” with the UK production of these medicines.

It added that domestic production is “complex” and that manufacturing “unlicensed herbal medicines” comes with “significant challenges”. 

Deacon said that the UK production of Bedrocan products was the “only solution”.

While other cannabis-based medicines are available in the UK, experts have warned that there is ‘significant variation’ from one product to the next and switching an epilepsy patient’s treatment could be ‘life-threatening’.

“With the 1 July deadline for Bedrolite supply to cease from the Netherlands looming ever closer, we made it clear we wanted an extension to the agreement to stop the situation becoming dangerous for Alfie and the other patients receiving this vital medicine,” commented Deacon.

“The long term solution of Bedrocan products being made in the UK still has some way to go, but it can be the only solution and we thank everyone who is working very hard to achieve this. 

“This is still a long way off from being okay, but for now we have the pressure taken off on the supply issue.”

With limited access to medical cannabis on the NHS, families are still calling for the Government to help fund their children’s prescriptions, which can cost thousands of pounds each month.

Deacon added: “The ever-pressing issue of financial burden on the many families and patients wishing to use medical cannabis in the UK remains and this is a huge issue which needs dealing with.

“There are many ways in which the Government could step in and help access for very vulnerable people and we will continue working as hard as we can to make things better for all.”

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