I am so excited that Tristen Nead has shared her knowledge of making goat’s milk soap with us! This is something I have always wanted to try, and Tristen makes absolutely beautiful soap! For any who are short on time, you can find incredibly reasonable prices in her Etsy Shop.
Oatmeal & Honey Goat’s Milk Soap
by guest author, Tristen Nead
What You’ll Need
To get started making soap, here’s a list of the tools you’ll need:
- Large stainless steel bowl
- Glass Bowl
- Rubber Spatula (use it only for making soap)
- Spoon and fork for making designs
- Hand Blender
- Double Boiler
- Soap Mold
My Soaping Bible
I get my basic recipes from Jan Berry’s book “Simple & Natural Soapmaking”. It’s a great book, jam-packed full of information and helpful hints for making soap. I strongly suggest adding it to your library.
Soap making is extremely fun and satisfying! So don’t be afraid to try things on your own.
With this recipe I use goat’s milk. I don’t have goats yet, so I get my milk from a neighbor down the road. They give me a gallon at a time, so to save it I weigh it out according to my recipes and freeze it. This recipe calls for 8.5 oz.
You always want to use frozen goat’s milk or the Lye will make the temperature too high. You can pull it out of your freezer and run some hot water over it to thaw slightly and help get it out of the bag. I then put the milk in my glass bowl.
Next, weigh out 3.9 ounces of Lye. Be very careful when handling lye and make sure you use your gloves. (It will burn you. Trust me, I know. It will leave blisters on your skin.)
Once the lye is ready to go in the milk, I normally either go outside to mix it together or put it under my oven fan so it sucks out the fumes. (Again it sucks if you breathe it in.) I suggest wearing safety glasses and a mask when working with lye.
Pour the lye very slowly into the milk. Stir it constantly, for you want to make sure the lye dissolves completely. This takes longer than when using water and lye. If you pour the lye in too fast, the milk will turn an orange color.
Okay, so now you have your milk and lye mixed together! Set it off to the side. You need the temperature to be at 100°. Here is were your trusty thermometer comes in hand. Keep an eye on it, for I find that it doesn’t take long for the milk to cool down.
Oils & Fats
While your lye cools, you need to get the oils and lard ready.
In the bottom of your Double Boiler, start some simmering water. Measure out 7 oz. of lard and 7 oz. of coconut oil into the top pan of the double boiler. Mix it and let it melt. While that is going on you can get your big stainless steel bowl and place it on the scale. Weigh out 14 oz of olive oil into the steel bowl and put to the side.
When your coconut oil and lard are completely melted down, combine them with the olive oil. Now both your lye and oils need to be at 100°.
If your lye or oils are not coming down in temp fast enough you can put your bowl in a ice water bath to quickly lower the temperature.
Let’s Get Tracing!
Yay!! Now here comes the fun part!! At least for me anyway. Tracing!
When your oils and lye reach their correct temperature, combine the lye mixture with the oil mixture. Here is where your hand blender comes in. Mix the two together until you can tell that the oils and milk are completely combined, with no separation.
Add about a tablespoon of honey. I eye ball it. Give another quick trace.
Then add from about a tablespoon to a tablespoon and a half of ground, steel cut oats. I just use a spatula to mix the oats in really well.
So when everything is all mixed up, it’s time to pour the soap into your mold(s). I use a loaf silicon mold, but you could also use smaller molds. Just pour it all in. I normally give it a couple of taps to make sure the soap is all even.
After a few minutes, check to see if the soap is setting up. If it is stiff enough to hold a shape, you can use a spoon and/or fork to make designs in the top of the soap. You can also add some oats to the top for decoration.
Take a piece of wax paper and cover the soap. Then get a tea towel and lay it over the wax paper. Put it in the refrigerator for 24 hours. Take it out and leave it sit for another 24 to 48 hours.
Take the soap out of the mold and cut it into bars.
Now to cure the soap, I normally put the bars on cookie cooling racks. You want air to be able to get all around the bars of soap. Let them cure for 4 weeks. In that time all the water in the soap will evaporate and make the soap last longer.
The Finished Product
Now your soap is ready to be enjoyed. Homemade soap also makes wonderful gifts for any occasion. Just get some cute string and either bunch a few bars together or just do the one. Either way, whoever is getting the gift will be delighted with what you made for them.
Happy Soaping!!Print Ingredient List
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