Crock pot soap is sometimes called hot process, different from cold process in that it is heated and cooked for a while. Here is a basic recipe:
¾ cup cool water – use distilled or filtered water
¼ cup lye – also called 100% sodium hydroxide
⅔ cup olive oil
⅔ cup coconut oil
⅔ cup other liquid oil such as grapeseed, almond, sunflower, or safflower oil (I love ALMOND)
Pour the water into a canning jar. Slowly add the lye and stir until dissolved. (Remember to use gloves and a mask )The fumes that come from the lye will stop in a minute or so.
Next, measure your oils and place them in the crock pot. Be sure to measure them at a liquid state, not solid. Many crock pots only have heating elements on the sides and not on the bottom, so you may need to double or triple this recipe to fill the slow cooker a little more. When the oils are hot (you can start on high to get it going, but then switch to low) you can add the lye. That’s right, I didn’t tell you what temperature they should be, because it really doesn’t matter with this process. If the oils are hot, the lye will be too and you’re going to cook it anyway.
Once you get the lye and oil mixed together, stir by hand for 5 minutes. I honestly believe that this is very important as it brings all of the lye in contact with all of the oil. After 5 minutes, then mix to bring it to a light trace. Remember, when you make cold process soap, you want to bring it to a medium trace, looking much like thick vanilla pudding. A light trace is more like pancake batter. Thick, but not like pudding.
Once it gets to a light trace, add your herbs, (NOT ESSENTIAL OILS) cover it and walk away. DON’T stir it! After about 20 minutes, sometimes sooner, you’ll see some bubbling on the sides. Then it will start to boil (sort of) and turn translucent, almost like petroleum jelly. After approximately another 20 minutes, it will expand more and start to curl in on itself. You still don’t want to stir it yet. When it’s all translucent and has folded in enough to fill in the middle, then it’s done for now.
At this point, turn the heat off. Then add about ¼ cup water and mix it in. You can add up to ½ cup water per batch and still have it come out ok. If you add more than that, it will be easy to pour, but then your soap will be spongy and won’t set up properly.
After it gets smoothed out, then you can add dried herbs and essential oils to make it what you want. Pour it into molds, cover with wax paper and let it sit for 24 hours. Don’t worry about retaining the heat. You just cooked it all out!
After 24 hours, take it out of the molds. Set it on some parchment or wax paper to cure for a week or so and that’s it.
Lentil Soup... You gotta LOVE LENTILS!!!
LENTIL SOUP RECIPECook two cups of dry lentils in six cups of water until the lentils are soft. Manwhile, dice a onion, a carrot, a rib or two of celery, and a couple cloves of garlic, and saute in a little olive oil for a couple of minutes. Add to the lentils and simmer until vegetables are soft. Then add a bunch of finely chopped greens (chard, kale, collards, spinach, cabbage), along with salt and whatever other seasonings you like, and simmer until greens are tender. Top with a bit of grated fresh parmesan or other topping you like.
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