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Taking care of your Mate kit

Curing your new mate cup

If your mate cup is made of glass, ceramic or silicone, just give it a good wash before using it. If your mate cup is guampa, you need to leave it for 24 hours in a bowl with hot water and detergent before using it. However, if it is made of gourd or wood, it is important to ‘curar el mate’. Curing your mate is quite simple; this process will assist closing the pores of your mate cup, helping to prevent the formation of mold and to avoid that the taste of wood or gourd affects the mate.

Time needed: 2 days. If you are going for the traditional route and have a wood or gourd mate cup, here is how to cure your mate cup:

  1. Fill your mate cup with boiling water. Let it sit for 10 minutes then empty it.

  2. Fill the gourd with used yerba and add warm water so the yerba does not dry out. Leave it like this for 24 hours. It's crucial to keep it wet while it's being cured (if you do not have used yerba, pour new yerba in a cup or glass and cover it with water for a couple of hours. Then add the wet yerba to your new mate cup as you would with used yerba).

  3. The next day remove the yerba with a spoon and lightly scrape the interior.

  4. Repeat step number 2 and 3.

  5. Rinse your mate cup and let it dry.

  6. Now your mate cup is ready to be used.

Cleaning the mate After you are done with your mate it is important to remove the yerba as soon as possible to avoid mold. If the mate cup is made of glass, ceramic or silicone, wash it as you would with other cups. However, if your mate cup is made of gourd or wood, here is how to keep it clean:

  1. Use the bombilla (or a spoon) to efficiently scrape the yerba from the mate gourd. The used yerba can be composted or disposed of with other organic waste.

  2. Rinse the mate and leave it to dry or pat with a clean towel or paper. It is important to avoid putting the mate upside down, as it could retain moisture.

  3. The mate gourd can be stored alongside cups or glasses once it's dried. Make sure it is in a dry place.

If you notice any mold scrape it from the mate, wash the mate with hot water and ‘cure’ it before using it again.

Cleaning the bombilla Maintenance steps vary from the material and shape, but in any case, the bombilla needs to be thoroughly cleaned after each use and requires also a deep cleaning every month. It is also recommended to give it a deep clean before its first use. To clean it daily, use hot water and pipe cleaning brushes (usually made of thin, flexible metal with a brush at the end) and then allow it to dry before storing it with the cutlery or other kitchen utensils. To do a deep cleaning is recommend it to submerge the bombilla in boiling water with 2 teaspoons of bicarbonate soda for 30 minutes.

How to store Yerba It's recommended to store Yerba in a dry place, away from humidity and sunlight. You can keep it in its original package as long as it is tightly closed, or preferably in a tight container.

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