What is Yerba Mate Tea? How to Brew?

Yerba mate tea, known as “mate cocido” is an infusion. Yerba mate is boiled in water, strained and served in a cup. It is a drink that replaces coffee at breakfast or afternoon tea. It is consumed in Bolivia, Argentina, Brazil, Paraguay, and Uruguay. Several companies offer yerba mate packed in bags, similar to tea bags, or even mate cooked in a soluble form. In Paraguay, mate or tereré is culturally consumed with medicinal plants such as cat’s claws, dandelion roots, etc.

What is Yerba Mate Tea? How to Brew?

Benefits of Drinking Yerma Mate Tea

The yerba mate tea has many properties, which you can take advantage of by enjoying the hot or cold yerba mate tea.

  • Source of Vitamins: It has vitamins of the B complex, which contribute to the release and use of the energy contained in food. They also help with muscle function and help to have healthy skin and hair.
  • Source of Minerals: It contains potassium, an essential mineral for the correct functioning of the heart.
  • Energizing Effect: Because of the xanthines it contains, yerba mate infusion is a natural source of energy that stimulates intellectual and physical effort, ideal for people who practice sports or both physical and mental activities.
  • Stops cell aging: Due to its high concentration of polyphenols, it has a great antioxidant power that stops aging by reducing the oxidation of cells.
  • Anticancer: Because of its antioxidant effect, it also prevents the growth of cancer cells by reducing mutations and genotoxic effects, which can transform cells and cause tumors.
  • Reduces the risk of cardiovascular disease: Helps prevent coronary disorders.
  • Inhibits the absorption of cholesterol: Helps lower the blood level of bad cholesterol.
  • Effective antibacterial: Prevents cavities by inhibiting the growth of bacterial plaque and bad breath.
  • Helps reduce fat: Reduces the absorption of dietary cholesterol and the reabsorption of bile acids. It also stimulates thermogenesis.
  • Inhibits the increase in blood pressure: The polyphenols present block the action of the enzyme involved in the conversion of angiotensin I to angiotensin II, responsible for the increase in blood pressure.

How to prepare Yerba Mate tea?

Enjoy this drink, both at breakfast, as an afternoon snack, or at any time of day.

  • The first thing you should know is the amount of water to boil, this depends on the amount of yerba mate tea you want to make. The most recommendable thing is to add the water in cups calculating according to the amount of people that are going to drink.
  • The water should be poured into a metal jug and taken to a high heat until it boils.
  • The next step is to add the yerba mate. Each cup of cooked mate needs one spoonful of yerba.
  • At the moment the yerba is added, the fire must be reduced and then raised again, when the water boiling is about to exceed it, it is extinguished.
  • For a few minutes you must let the yerba settle in the water and then serve it using a strainer.
  • The cooked mate can be sweetened with sugar or sweetener. In addition, depending on the taste of each person, milk can also be added.

Yerba Mate Tea Beverage Recipes

Yerba Mate Tea Beverage Recipes

Burnt Yerba Mate Tea

The cocido quemado or cocido negro, as it is also popularly called, is one of the best known varieties of mate cocido.

Both infusions are similar, what changes is the flavor since in the cocido quemado the yerba must be melted together with the sugar by the heat of a lit charcoal grill.

The preparation of the “mate cocido quemado” can vary according to each region. Basically the recipe consists in using a lit coal to burn the yerba and prepare a candy with sugar. Hot water is added to this.

The flavor of the burnt mate cocido is bitter, because of the flavor of the burnt yerba, but slightly sweet because of the caramel. Super delicious.

Yerba Mate tea with milk

The procedure is very similar to the previous one, except that instead of hot water, hot milk is used; in very few areas -very warm- it is taken with cold milk, but there are not too many followers of this type.

Iced Yerba Mate Tea

Another option to enjoy the mate cocido and refresh yourself in summer, is the iced mate cocido. This is the same as the traditional mate cocido.

This preparation is very simple. You should prepare the mate cocido as usual and then let it rest at room temperature to cool down. Then you should take it to the refrigerator for a few minutes, or if you want it to cool down faster you should add some ice cubes.

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