Friday, December 21, 2012

Honey, Beer & Butter Soap

Based on the rave reviews of my previous batch of Beer & Honey Soap, I decided to make another batch with a few improvements……..I think. In any case, I have just 3 bars left of the previous batch and they could be on their way to Dubai soon as someone wants to pick them up as a Christmas gift for the family back there……….
This time, I added my recently procured Cocoa & Shea butters to add that extra luxury to the soap. I scented them with a mix of Orange and Cinnamon fragrance oils and a few drops of Fennel and Nutmeg essential oils. I had recently visited a micro brewery with my DDs. They had some real good home grown beers flavoured with different herbs like fennel, coriander, cardamom etc. That is where I got my inspiration from. I must say, the soap smells divine. I am sure a lot of the smells will grow milder as the soap cures. Will be interesting to note which smells last. Will keep you posted. Any guesses?

Fresh soap in mould

There is no colour added to this soap and for the life of me I cannot imagine where the this lovely rust colour came from. I wonder if it was the reaction of the FO with, probably, honey. I think it looks good. It definitely does not look anything like the beer & honey soap I made earlier.

This is also the first time I have had Soda Ash forming on my soap. I wonder why? The internet tells me that it could be because I did not cover my soap enough while it was in the mould. Soda Ash is basically your Sodium Hydroxide coming into contact with the Carbon Dioxide in the atmosphere. It does not impact the soap in any way, except, aesthetically. I seem to quite like it, though. I think it adds flavour to the overall 'handmade' concept..... To avoid it, the best thing is to keep the soap suitably insulated when you pour it in the mould. I normally do it, but this time I did not since I wanted to avoid a ‘volcanic eruption’ considering the amount of honey there was in it.

Soda Ash on Soap
Cutting the soap was also difficult and it kept crumbling, as you can see below, especially on the sides. I think it was due to the high butter content in the soap. Between Cocoa & Shea butter, I had nearly 30% of butters in the soap. Plus 8% SF. Plus water discount. What did you expect? Anyway, it seemed to settle down after about 48 hours and I was able to cut some decent bars. Lesson learnt. Don’t try to put too much into one soap. 

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