Blending one's own Rapé allows the maker to imprint the blend with one's own direction and intent, in the process of making it. An interesting article to read is The power of your Intentions. With the traditional approach to preparing Rapé the indigenous first set their intentions, after which the ingredients are blended knowing firstly what they are trying to achieve. Rarely, if at all do they mix Rapé without this intention being fully present. It is advised when blending your own varieties to take time to consider your own intentions and be fully clear and present in what your are trying to achieve with your own personal creation.
Rapé preparations are usually based on two distinct ingredients: Tabaco and ashes. Which can be mixed with a wide variety of other aromatic or medicinal components. The main ingredients of Tobacco and ashes of a particular tree or plant material serve as the main constituents of any blend possible to make yourself. Just taking powdered Tabacoo De Moy and blending with an equal quantity of ashes, and charging it with your specific intentions, will provide a powerful experience close to many current Rapé varieties available. The type of Tobacco as well as the type of ashes can subtly alter the experience. By adding a range of other ingredients to the preparation one can achieve many changes in the overall effects of your own personal blend. For instance, a typical preparation of Mapacho and Pau Pereira Ashes is widely and noticeably different than a blend of Tabaco De Moy and Murici Ashes. Therefore the blending and mixing of these two ingredients can have an infinite number of combinations given the unique variety of materials available. Especially when one considers the intention they hold whilst creating their own mixes, which will have a dramatic effect on the overall energetic system and feelings produced.
Making a Rapé mixture is easy when you have ready made tobacco powders and ashes at hand. When you own a variety of Rapé's, these can also serve as an ingredient. Additionally one can use fresh leaves and flowers, or dry spices or aromatic herbs to infuse one's Rapé blend with a nice aroma.
When blending Rapé it is important to work in a dry environment. On a humid and rainy day the air humidity is very high. The tobacco and ashes are an extremely dry powder and absorb humidity from the air immediately when exposed to it. Close your bottles after use and do not keep the powders exposed to light and air longer than needed.
Where to start:
It is best to start with getting to know each ingredient on its own. This means taking small doses of each tobacco, and each ash, to sense its character. This is a task that may require some time, and can not be done in one day.
Once you have found your favourite basis of tobacco (Rustica varieties such as Tabaco de Moy or Corda are commonly used as a basis), and decided on which ashes to use (each ash has its own specific medicinal quality), simply mix a small spoonful together with a spoonful of ashes. This first blend will be a very little amount, enough for a few doses. Make notes about what type and how many spoons are used, so you can repeat the experiment on a larger scale. If you want to be very precise, you can use a digital scale to weigh all your ingredients precisely. Generally the ideal proportion to start from is a ratio of 1:1 Tobacco and ashes, and finetune the blend from there.
How to evenly blend the ingredients together:
Fill a small empty bottle or pot with the mixture. Use the included steel funnel. Make sure that it fills the bottle only upto a third, so that the little amount of Rapé can mix well. Shake this thoroughly. For best results, allow the mixture to settle for a day and a night, so that all particles have infused each other with their powers. Shake again, and it is ready for testing and finetuning. The process of adding more ingredients to make the ultimate Rapé blend, is one of personal taste and feel, and there are no rules or limitations. The more ashes added, the "greyer" and sharp the Rapé becomes, The more dark Tobacco present, makes it more "brown" and grounding. Finding the balance between the two is an art in itself.
Once you have created the ultimate personal Rapé and you have made your notes carefully, you can start creating a larger batch by by repeating the process. Multiply your recipe by 10, for example, to make a quantity 10 times more than your test recipe. Before making the blend, make sure that all your ingredients have enough quantity in the bottle.
Making a perfect Rapé is fairly simple. Just keep finetuning it. Repeating the process and making a Rapé exactly the same, is almost impossible. The time and place where it is made, the available ingredients at the time and the position of the stars and other factors such as the intention, all play a unique factor in a Rapé.
Your unique pot of Rapé can still be finetuned after creation. Simply add those ingredients that you seem important for its power, or its smell or taste. Your personal Rapé pot can also be one that never finishes. When using your previous recipe as an ingredient of your new recipe, you will have an endlessly present power in your Rapé, that you have infused it with from the very first one you made. In other words, never finish your pot, but use the last 10% as addition to the next blend.
Adding a spicey or flowery note to your Rapé:
This is a very simple process. Add a freshly picked leaf (for example Spearmint or Lavender) to the Rapé. Use a glass jar. Mix the leaf into the powder in whole form. Allow this to infuse for a day and a night in a very warm spot. The leaf will infuse its aroma in the powder, but also some of its water. If you see humidity (condensation) in the jar, open it up so it can evaporate. Then empty the bottle on a dish and allow the Rapé to dry on a warm spot (above the heater). When fully dry, pick out the whole leaf, shake the powder of it, and discard it. Allow your Rapé to fully dehydrate before packing it into a bottle. Possibly one can use dessiccant bag to place in the Rapé pot, to allow further and complete removal of any humidity.
The same way, one can add the aroma of Cinnamon, Vanilla, Tonka, or other dry spices to a Rapé. Add a chunk of Cinnamon to your pot, and leave it settling for a few days or more. After infused, remove the aromatic ingredient. Since you are using dry herbs, it is not neccesary to dehydrate the Rapé before storage.
It is of course also possible to simply add dry powdered herbs as ingredient, such as Mint leaves or Sage, or even Palo Santo wood. Such additions would need to be very finely powdered and used sparsely, and blended into the tobacco carefully, using a mortar and pestle. And, to filter the herbs into the same ultrafine powder as the ashes and Tobacco, one would need a very fine sieve.
One can also make one's own ashes. Ashes of Palo Santo wood, of Sweetgrass or Sage, are powerful and aromatic. Only very little is needed. To make ashes, simply put a flame to a piece of wood or a leaf, allow it to burn fully, and collect the ashes.
How to mix a powerful ingredient into a Rapé blend evenly:
To mix a very small portion of ingredient into a larger volume of powder, work as follows. (for example some ashes of Sweetgrass). One needs a mortar and pestle. Place the ingredient with the smallest volume (the ashes) in the mortar and pestle. Add an amount of Rapé 5 times of the ashes to the mortar and mix this evenly. Then keep adding the Rapé slowly, while keeping mixing. This assures an even blend of the smallest ingredient into the mix. In simple words: Start with the smallest ingredient. When adding powerful aromatics of Menthol crystals, or Tonka beans as powder in your Rapé it is wise to be very very modest in the ratio. Approximate weight needed to aromatise Rapé are for example: Menthol: 0,01%. Tonka bean 0,5%. As explained above, start blending with the smallest ingredient. Please contact us if you wish to explore such additions, as much care is needed.
If for any reason you find your newly created Rapé to be too strong, or too aromatic, simply dilute it down with more plain tobacco or ashes powders, to balance it to your taste.
Suggested Rapé ingredients:
A selection of essential ingredients we have identified and used in our own alchemical preparations: Chocolate, Menthol, Vanilla, Cinnamom, Cardamom, Coffee Beans, Tonka Beans, Spearmint, Lavender, Osha, Sage, Guayusa.
All mentioned tools and products needed to blend Rapé are available from Katukina.
Information on traditional Rapé ingredients and Ashes:
-Pau Pereira / Tsunu Ash (Geissospermum vellossi / Platycyamus regnellii)
Strengtens the immune system, works against flu, treats Herpes I & II, AIDS / HIV, treats all types of tumors and cancer, especially in initial states, Hepatitis A & B, Anemia and Leukemia, treats fever, brochitis and pneumonia.
-Murici Ash (Byrsonima spicata a.o.)
Treats inflamation, diarrea and gastrointestinal problems, anti-bacterial and anti-fungus, treats infeccions in the mouth and troat, treat hemeoroids and strengtens the immune system
-Cumaru / Tonka Ash (Dipteryx odorata)
Treats colics, spasms, bronchitis and flue. Cumarine is an emenagoge, diaforetic, antispasmodic, cardíaca, stimulates the nervous system, is anaestesic, treats headaches, strengtens the heart.
-Mulateiro Ash (Calycophyllum sprucceanum)
Anti bacterial, anti fungus, anti-oxidant, heals wounds, fights free radicals, treats diabetes, fights skin parasites. Is used in skin cosmetics.
-Pau Ferro Ash (Caesalpinia ferrea / Libidibia ferrea)
Treats ulcers, anemia, coughing, astma and brochitis, treats disenteria.
-Arikury Ash (Syagrus schizophylla)
Ophthalmia, spiritual purpose, strength.
-Cacau Ash (Theobroma cacau)
Anti-oxidant, diuretic, dopamine for the brain, spiritual purpose
-Justicia / Trevo-Cumaru / Chambá Ash (Justicia pectoralis)
Expectorant, works against cough, bronchitis, pneumonia
-Samauma / Kapok Tree Leaf & Bark (Ceiba pantandra)
Cures headaches, brings good dreams.
-Flor de Jarina (Phytelephas macrocarpa)
Used for spiritual purpose, protection, spiritual vision.
-Imburana Seeds (Commiphora leptophloeos)
Works against colds, cough, bronchitis, gastritis, ulcers
-Canela-de-velho ash (Cenostigma macrophyllum)
Treats colds, flues and cough, headaches, arthrose, artritis, pain. Is anti-oxidant, anti-inflamatory. Digestive tonic, anti-tumoral, anti-bacterial. Used for blood purification.