Sunday, December 1, 2013

Cro Bar... Unveiled


Yes Cro, its time to expose you for what your are.

One fine bar of soap.  Arrogant , I know, but I am only repeating what others have said. Amazing testimonials like these:

"Nothing gets off the smell of dead trout like Cro"  and

"If your kitchen stinks after supper, was up with a little Cro" and my favorite

"Showering with Cro can be a bit rough, but the end result is well worth the pain"

So there you have it. Folks like Cro-bar soap and although I have given you the recipe before I do not believe I've given clear directions. Being in the giving Christmas spirit, I will therefore do just that. Please note these directions assume you have basic soap making skills. If you do not please take time to learn. I highly recommend one of the beginners Cold Process Soap Making Tutorials on The Soap Queens Blog 

Cro-Bar waiting to be cut into equally spaced bars. Please note the pattern
on top of the soap for your whisk.

So Here goes my Cro Bar Instructions. They are improved from my last post about Cro Bar as like so many other soapers I love to tweak my recipes. Which is just another way of saying, I forgot to write it all down the last time I made it.

Ingredients for a 2 pound (32 oz batch of soap)

8 oz of Guiness Stout left standing alone in a bowl at room temperature for at least 2 days. It's how the Irish "decant"
2oz filtered tap water
4.5 oz lye crystals

13 oz of Coconut Oil melted
13 oz Olive Oil (Pomace)
3 oz Castor Oil
3 oz Sweet Almond Oil

1tsp used coffee grounds
1/4 tsp clove powder
1/2 tsp cocoa powder
1 tsp Titanium Dioxide disolved in very hot water

1oz Cedarwood Essential Oil
1 oz Amyris Essential Oil

Prepare your 2 pound mold. I use a heavey wooden mold handmade by my husband.

2 pans or bowls or containers or whatever you use to divide your soap into two portions. One will hold approx. 3/4  of your soap mix and the other will hold the remaining 1/4.

Now, add the  Guinness and water then slowly add the lye and set aside until cool. It will get hot fast and will bubble some but since it has sat out it should not boil over if you use a tall pitcher to mix in..

Mix your oils together. Melt if needed but let oils cool to room temp.
Combine oils and lye solution just to emulsion point and pour 3/4 of it into one container and 1/4 into another

In the smaller amount of soap add your titanium dioxide mixture and stir in with a spoon. Don't stick blend yet.

In the larger soap mixture, mix with stick blender to thin trace. Then add your coffee grounds, EO's and cocoa powder and stir in well with spoon. NOW add your clove powder. Adding it last works best because Clove powder will really thicken things up fast so be ready to pour right away

Hit the whole mixture with your stick blender and the second it starts getting thick pour it into your mold. Bang the mixture to get rid of air bubbles.

Return to your smaller soap mixture and using your cleaned off stick blender, mix it well and pour it over the darker soap already in your mold. Now you can use a small whisk plunging it back and forth through both layers of soap in short rows up the length of your mold to get the fun wave designs I have in mine. Or don't, it still comes out real pretty like. See the pattern of the whisk in the picture of my soap in the soap cutter.

This recipe heats up well and I usually don't cover it with a towel as it will gel all the way through on its own. Besides I don't care much if I get a full gel or a partial gel. I'm all non-picky like that as far as this recipe goes.

12 hours later it is usually ready to unmold and cut.

You might wonder why I only scent the bottom half of the soap. Well, the EO's and powders I use to get the soap its rich brown all have a tendency to make the soap thick really fast and they are enough to scent through the whole bar even if the top white portion is not scented. I also do not use another spatula to pour the top layer over the bottom layer again because that bottom layer gets so thick that the top layer has never yet fallen through to the bottom layer. Not yet at least

So there you have it. The soap will smell earthy and rich from the beer and slightly sweet from the Amyris Essential Oil. The coffee grounds are exfoliative and wonderful for rough hands and/or feet. They also will remove the smell of onions, garlic, stinky fish and so make a great gift for the hunters or cooks in your family.

Let me know in your comments if any questions. And thanks again to blog follower Cro Magnon for inspiring me to name and make this soap.