Candle and soap makers, HELP!

Discussion in 'Homesteading Questions' started by cindyc, Dec 7, 2005.

  1. cindyc

    cindyc Well-Known Member

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    OK,
    I just got a BOATLOAD of beef tallow from a bulk meat buy I did with 7 other families. There are a few recopies I've found for eating it, from the Nourishing Traditions book, and some Mennonite friends, but I have WAY too much for that, and not enough freezer space to keep it as pet food. Anybody know how to make candles or soap with it?
    Waste not, want not. :)

    Thanks a Bunch,
    Cindyc.
     
  2. MachaTheCrow

    MachaTheCrow Member

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    I don't like making candles fron beef tallow, they don't tend to burn very clean. Soap, however, go to : www.millersoap.com/soapanimal

    they have a section on using beef, and can explain it better than I can

    Macha
     

  3. Charleen

    Charleen www.HarperHillFarm.com Supporter

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    cindyc- You're one lucky woman! I'd love a boatload of tallow for soap! We render our lard and can it, so if you've a storage problem for all that tallow, consider canning it. Cyndi from MullersLaneFarm has a good rendering tutorial. Sorry, can't help you with candle info.

    Here's a link to another thread with lots of soapmaking links. Cyndi's is included. There is also a Yahoo Group devoted to using Tallow for soap.

    http://www.homesteadingtoday.com/showthread.php?t=107417
     
  4. cindyc

    cindyc Well-Known Member

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    That is an amazing thread! Thank you! That was exactly what I needed.
    One question, though... Is there specific info out there about canning renedered tallow? I am a novice canner at best, without a lot of experience in canning low-acid veggies or animal products. I would hate to make everybody in my family sick by lack of knowledge.

    Macha, thank you for the miller soap link, too! Nice to have knowlegeable people to listen to.


    (Speaking of lack of knowledge, how did I mange to put that purple smile guy up there, and how do I get him off?) :)
     
  5. beaglady

    beaglady Well-Known Member

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    Cyndi's tutorial includes directions on canning it. I'm jealous too. Tonight, I have to stop at the local meat mkt to pick up 20# of ground suet so I can render more tallow - I already used all from the the beef in our freezer.

    I almost always use tallow in my soap. It makes it so creamy and moisturizing, but I've never ventured to use more than 35% in a recipe & usually only 20%. Good luck to you.
     
  6. cindyc

    cindyc Well-Known Member

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    Thanks for all the help, guys. I didn't have as much as I thought I did. After rendering, I have about 18c. of tallow. I have 2 and a half gallon size bags of fat left to do in addition to that. I gave up on getting it all done after midnight last night.

    Some of what I had was soup bones. (Like two garbage bags full!)

    Anyway, thanks, I will be trying some of these soap recipes from the links you sent. I'll let you know how it goes.

    Any suggestions for the novice? Never done this before. :)
     
  7. beaglady

    beaglady Well-Known Member

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    Advice for the novice:

    Make small batches. A lot of the Millersoap recipes make about 6# of soap. If you're learning and experimenting, you'll learn more my trying more smaller batches. 2# is big enough to learn from, without being stuck with a ton of one kind soap. Cardboard boxes lined with plastic wrap work fine for beginner molds.

    Get a digital scale if you don't already have one. Most lye calculators list the ingredients on both oz & grams. Weigh your lye in grams for more accuracy.

    Speaking of lye calculators, run every new recipe through one. Some published recipes aren't accurate. Also, Sooz, Soapmaker & Cyndi's lye calculator all provide a breakdown of fatty acids for each recipe. Comparing this info with how the soap actually makes your skin feel is a good way to start to understand the properties of oils and learn to make up your own recipes that have the properties you prefer.

    If you have time, join one (or more) of the online soapmaking groups. Lots of nice folks & helpful advice.

    Almost forgot - Red Devil has reportedly stopped distributing lye. If you local store still sells it, hoarde as much as you can afford. Read the labels before buying, since their replacement product has other undesirable ingredients.
     
  8. K-Frog

    K-Frog Member

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    Be sure to save the bones when you are done with them, pressure cook them, then grind them to a dust (it will be easy once they are pressure cooked), and use them in the compost or garden!