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Thursday, May 26, 2011

My Rustic Tallow Soaps, (and rebatched soaps too)

Love spell

Honey Oat

Honey Oat





Rebatched Fuzzy Peach

Rebatched Chocolate/Buttercream Snickerdoodle
There are so many beautiful handmade soaps on the Internet, alot of them are made with tallow or lard, everyone who has made them says that they make a lovely hard yet creamy bar of soap, and there are many recipes out there that you can try for yourself, so far i hadn't used animal fats in my soap only oils and butters, mainly because i am a vegetarian and don't really like putting animal fats onto my skin, but i was curious as to what a soap made with animal fats was like so i decided to go ahead and make a batch.
Buying lard or any other animal fat is impossible in my town, i had to go to several butchers and supermarkets until i managed to find a small container of lard, when i opened the container i found the most disgusting stuff inside, it was a browish colour and slimy and runny in texture and stunk like bacon fat i knew that i couldn't use it in my soap making, so i had to try and think where else i could get lard from i started ringing around and i looked on the Internet but still i couldn't find any anywhere,in the end i decided I'd have to use beef fat. I buy all the meat that my non vegetarian family eats from our local farmers market, the butcher that we buy from is a really nice guy so i asked him if he had any suet for sale, he said he didn't sell it but could buy some in especially for me at no cost to me, he told me that when i came back the following week he would make sure that he had some suet for me.
The following week i went to the market as usual to do my shopping and the butcher asked us to come into the back of the van and grab the suet, i couldn't believe it, he handed me a huge plastic bag full of suet there would have easily been 25 kilos, that night we both spent 2 long hours cutting up the suet it was awful, i had lived on a diary farm for 8 odd years and seen some really awful stuff but for me this was horrible, having my hands touching yucky suet,( alot still had the kidneys attached), my hubby said it was top quality suet and i was very lucky to have it as it is worth alot of money and is a rare find, i felt very grateful to this kind man, but i could just imagine what it must have looked like had anyone looked in my kitchen widow that night and seen me and my hubby standing there with the sharpest of knives and my benches covered with piles and piles of cut up suet.
Next came the most revolting part cooking the suet, it took 8 solid hours to render it all down, the smell was overwhelming and i spent the whole time trying not to throw up, when it was over i was amazed i had loads of lovely solid fat, which really didn't smell at all,so doing what i love i made several batches of beautiful soap.
I made all my soap in the crock pot by hot process, the first batch was plain and didn't lather up very well at all but it was very hard and had a lovely texture and would make an ideal laundry soap,so with my next batches i added coconut oil, Castor oil, and a little Olive oil, they turned out to be the best soaps ever,they are lovely soaps they lather up so well and are beautiful and creamy with the most amazing texture, nobody except for me could smell the animal fat in them, (although you could hardly smell the fat at all) some i put coffee grounds and coffee fragrance in, others had oats and honey in plus fragrance of milk, oats and honey for an extra boost, i must say that i do love the way these soaps turned out but for me it just wasn't worth the hassle, but at least i can say that i have tried it and i still have loads of tallow in the freezer yet to use.
The next of my soaps are rebatched i had loads of end bits and odd shapen soaps that i don't use so i decided to rebatch them, the fuzzy peach i made in the crock pot which took ages so the chocolate/ buttercream snickerdoodle i made in the microwave it was fast and easy and the result was great so next time i rebatch my soaps i will use the convenience of the microwave instead.

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