The hardest thing about soap is knowing when it is done. This is judged by a state called “trace.” This is when a dribble of soap kind of stays on the surface instead of sinking into the pot. Think honey on a counter top as it slowly flattens out.
- Lye — Mix in large pyrex measuring cup, stir with a chopstick saved from order-in Chinese food. Again, do not breathe the fumes. Wear goggles.
- 700 milliliters purified water
- 270 grams or 9 1/4 ounces lye (one small container)
- Oils (Mix in a big pot.)
- Olive oil 955 grams or 4 1/2 cups (Use the cheap pomace olive oil; virgin doesn’t work as well.)
- Coconut oil 390 grams 500 milliliters 2 cups
- Grapeseed oil 515 grams 500 milliliters 2 cups
- Let lye mixture cool to 110 degrees F. Warm oils to 110 degrees F. When both are at the same temperature, slowly pour lye mixture into oils. Mix with a stick blender until trace, periodically scraping sides and bottom of pan with a spatula.
- At trace, add 10 milliliters cinnamon oil. Mix as little as possible, just enough to combine. Theoretically, the soap can harden very quickly at this stage, trapping your spatula inside a giant bar. I have never had a problem with this recipe, though.
- Pour into mold. Wrap with heavy blankets for 24 hours to keep the heat in and help the chemical reaction.
- The next day, when soap has set, cut it into bars and store, separated nicely, on brown paper in cool place. Turn over after two weeks. Use after one month.