My first grow I “sampled” throughout the flowering process. I took small popcorn buds and pressed them between paper towels to help them dry. After a couple days they were smokable. Tasted like crap and weren’t as potent but at least got me high. This hobby does test your patience but once you experience the fruits of your labor, you’ll understand why patience pays off. Of course that’s easy to say when you’re sitting on 6 or 8 oz of dried bud. We’ve all been there.
Cut off a whole big branch or whatever two weeks before the rest of the plant is done. When it’s time to harvest you won’t be impatient that first branch will be ready to smoke, properly dried and cured a bit. Because the rush drying produces a sucky smoke it doesn’t give you an accurate taste for what your new smoke is like.