Sunday, April 8, 2012

Stepping Outside the Box

A soapmaker friend suggested that cheese might be a really great ingredient in soap.  After all we use all kinds of dairy including yogurt and eggs too, so why not cheese.  Of course I had to jump in with both feet.

I chose to make a cream cheese soap and do it cold processed.  I fragranced it Cherry and am naming the soap Cherry Cheesecake.

This was a really, really interesting experiment and I thought that there was a good chance I would end up with soap on a stick.  I decided  that I would melt the cream cheese along with my coconut oil.  That didn't go so good, it didn't melt!  So now I decided to add the olive oil and stickblend it all together and that was interesting, it looked like rice particles.  Hmmmm, now what.  Deciding that I needed to be ready for anything I prepared my crock pot in case I had to hot process this.

I added colour and lye.  Started blending, it looked like it was going to rice, which means that it is actually separating into different parts with the fats solidifying out of the oils.  Kept mixing, it came together.  Time to add fragrance.  Since it was a fruit scent I expected it to turn into greased lightening so I had my mould ready to go and handy.  Well this is strange - it's not thickening so I keep blending.  20 minutes later it is still not getting thick.  Of course my first thought is that what I thought was lye water wasn't.  I turned off the stick blender and look around to see if I had somehow made a mistake.  Nope I but the lye in just like I'm supposed to.  I decided to let it sit for a minute to see if it would start to move when I wasn't looking after all that happens when I forget to have my moulds ready.  Stubborn thing it still doesn't want to go beyond what we call thin trace.  What that means is everything is emulsified and it is properly mixed, but I usually like to get it to a medium trace which looks like pudding so I can play with the tops.  Back to blending but my poor stick blender is getting a little but warm.  Time to just pour it and hope for the best.  I poured it and had a little bit more that wouldn't fit into the regular log mould.  This is the part I would usually use to creates peaks on top of the soap so I poured it into some rose moulds.

I checked on the soap and it has thickened up nicely so it is going to be just fine.  Very excited to try it, but it will be a couple of days at least before I can cut it. 

I will do a follow-up post when I cut.  These will not b available for sale until the end at the of April.



  1. My 'bread' scented yoghurt and ale soap did the same! I am glad it didn't go fast for you, even if you were ready. Lol... I can just see you turning around to check the lye wasn't still on the bench!

    For blending in the cream cheese, perhaps next time reserve some water/liquid and blend it into that first?

  2. It really was funny. Looking at the lye jar that I had poured in there wondering what the devil had been in there. Then checking to see if there was another one....

    I think next time I will do my usual water discount which gives me a lye concentration of 38%... I love how smooth the pour was and I can hardly wait to cut it...

    I love the yogurt soap that you got me started on...