Friday, March 4, 2011

Trying my hand with goat milk soap!

I am adding another skill to my domestic list! I made homemade soap using my homegrown goat milk. I'm so excited to try new things and become more self sufficient. Of course I do ALOT of trial and error but failing is part of learning. I followed the directions for the soap making process. and this is what turned out...

Here is the recipe:
12 oz. lye
6C. goat milk
5.5lbs fat (I used lard) clarified and luke warm
4 heaping tsp Borax
2C oatmeal finely ground
2oz. glycerin

Lye is dangerous it burns skin. So you need to wear long pants, sleeves ,rubber gloves and goggles for protection. I still splashed some and have a small chemical burn on my neck. Absolutely no children!!!

Slowly add the lye to the goats milk stirring with a wooden spoon. The mixture get hot. Feel the sides of the bowl.
Once it is warm, add the fat stirring as you do.
Next add the borax and oatmeal
Then the glycerine
Stir the mixture until it starts to harden and then pour into molds.
wrap the molds in towels to retain the heat and place in a cool dry area overnight.
Unmold and let cure for 6 weeks in a cool dry place.

The soap smells funny at first but the book says that the smell will go away as the soap ages.
I had to stir for over an hour before the mixture became thick enough to pour into the mold. I read in other directions that if you use an emersion blender it would only take a few minutes. I'm hitting the thrift stores in search of one!

This is my trial run.
I had planned on using some old bread tins as my molds. They would have been perfect. But for some reason I got it into my head in the middle of stirring the soap that I could not put the lye soap in aluminum. Which is true you can't, but my bread tins are just that --- tin. I don't know what brain cell I fried but I kept thinking the bread tins were aluminum and I changed the plan and went with the plastic container and the glass dish.
The glass dish was a bad idea because I can't figure out how to get the soap out of the mold. Glass does not bend... I'm nut sure about warming up the bottom and flipping it over but I'm sure I'll think of something.

I have a few questions I'm going to call the extension office to get answers.
Why did the soap turn orange? I read that goat milk soap was white.

Did I unmold the soap too early? It started to crumble. Or do I just need a sharper knife?

Should I have used lye flakes instead of lye granules? Does that make a difference?

Well, I hope you enjoyed my soap making adventure. Once I work out the bugs I'm going to try this again with essential oils and real molds.

I wonder what I'm going to try next? I was thinking about making stationary from hand made paper...


  1. The soap turned orange because of the small amount of fat in the milk, if you freeze the milk first and S-l-o-w-l-y add the frozed milk cubes to the lye, it helps to avoid the yellow color. I am told so slowly that it takes about 15 minutes to add in. Just a few tiny crumbs of lye at a time onto the frozen milk. Don't know if this is true or not as I haven't actually tried it, I just saw it posted on a Youtube video. There is a ton of cheese and soap making how to's on there. Love you tube as I am a more visual learner. Good luck friend.