The recipe that I used for the soap I made came from a Readers Digest book titled Back To Basics. A Practical Guide To Old-Fashioned Self Sufficiency.
The recipe was simply called *the single cake method* and used 3 ingredients:
125ml of cold water.
2 tablespoons of caustic soda.
250ml of melted beef fat or vegetable oil.
Slowly add the caustic soda to the water. Bring the caustic mix and the oil/fat to body temp and mix together in a glass bowl until the consistency of sour cream. Pour into mold and age as normal. Or words to that effect!
It said not to use hard water. Said that New Zealand Tblspoons are heaped.
I melted my lard in a glass jar in the microwave. You need to watch this as it did melt and get hot quicker than I thought it would. I mixed the CS and water in an old Powerade container and mixed both lots in a sm honey bucket that I had. When the containers holding the caustic soda and water mix and the melted lard felt slightly warm I added them together. Nothing fancy but could have been done better and I will use a different stirrer next time. The grapeving stick wasn't the greatest idea. If I decide to make a big lot I will probably see about getting a thermometer that will be used just for the CS. I have one that I could use for the fat but didn't use it this time.
There is a lot of scarey stories about the dangers of soapmaking. The Caustic Soda can burn but as with anything using common sense will stop a lot of accidents. To make soap you need Caustic Soda, there is no getting away from that. Read your recipes, have everything you need ready, wear comfortable safety gear, take care but enjoy the challenge of doing something not everybody does.
This recipe made me 4 cakes of soap.
The mold I used was 9 inches by 3and a half inches
The soap is just over a 1/2 inch thick.
I bought my Caustic Soda from our local rural store. 2 kilo for $20. They had 500gm containers for around $7. Our hardware store didn't have any when I asked but did get some 500gm lots in afterwards and they were cheaper . Our IGA used to sell CS but doesn't anymore. It seems to be harder to get now though so I will get another bottle to put away. Ready to make soap for when all the zombies come!