The Soap

Food and Beverage Soap Making Challenge

June 2019 – Food & Drink Ingredients

I am participating in the advance category where 100% liquid is replaced by a beverage and 12.5% or 1/8 of the oil weight is a food additive. Soaps in this category must be naturally colored and scented.

Yangtze: Jasmine Milk Tea and Jasmine Rice Soap

My inspirations for this soap lie in asian esthetics, asian foods and beverages : specifically tea and rice. Growing up in San Francisco has exposed me to wonderful asian inspired restaurants, snacks and dim sum eateries. Boba milk teas are huge in my area. My high school students love their milk teas. Milk tea is typically black tea (sometimes Jasmine or another traditional tea) infused in a milk base usually served sweet. A quality base can be coconut milk , rice milk or sweetened condensed milk .

I love the aromas of Jasmine tea and Jasmine rice. I find tea soaps have a lovely scent even when scent is not added.

Many skin products (including soap) from asia have rice, rice bran oil and or tea as part of the ingredients. These are said to be the beauty secrets of the east...(no longer secret...check out the products on amazon). Rice brightens the skin and fades acne scars. With the rice milk and rice puree ( the food additive)- the rice sugars are lather enhancing. The soap lathered extremely well immediately. Coconut cream was added for richness , candied ginger (for fun and possible scent) and tea for reinvigorating and regenerative age defying properties. Now who doesn't' want that?

I am fascinated by an extremely talented Youtube and Facebook videographer, Chef and farmer Liziqi. Her channel is below.

What she can do with the flowers, herbs and fruit she cultivates is amazing .

She has a video on ancient makeup that is mesmerizing. See above link.

She also does a lot of medicinal work and fermentations. She also raises silk worms.

Back to the Soap

My soap liquid is infused rice milk that I prepared several days ahead . I steeped it with Jasmine tea, candied ginger and then added some coconut cream. Then I prepared the rice porridge or congee (the main food additive) for the soap challenge. I added coconut cream and a little coconut milk powder after the cooking stage. I froze the liquid part (tea infused rice milk) in small ice cubes for the lye solution. 4 ounces of rice puree was added to the soap batter before trace with the candied ginger to a 2 lb batch. Because it was precooked it blended very well.

Rice milk and porridge are easier to work with than oat milk and oatmeal porridge in my experience.

Tea, coconut and rice are all said to have wonderful properties for the skin.

California is a rice growing state. My close friend Sumiko says the best rice is grown in California including sushi rice.

I added coconut cream to increase the richness of the additives.

I actually ate the congee or rice porridge for several days. The perfect get well comfort food. It was excellent. Here is a recipe .

Of course I did a vegetarian recipe for the soap challenge. Ginger is a classical ingredient in congee .

In my first and second batch , I added additional heat enhancing food ingredients and used more solid oils like shea and cocoa butter. As overheating was a real problem, I become extremely careful by the third attempt. I went through a lot of coconut and olive oil . On this third batch I carefully controlled temperatures, measured the food additives precisely and eliminated some of the extras ie corn silk. I changed my soap recipe to a basic bastille with mostly olive oil hoping it would not overheat as much. I kept a bit of rice bran oil to keep with the theme knowing it can accelerate . I chilled my mold. No need to put in the oven. All former attempts gelled to a translucent state on their own without insulation . I imagine it was all the extra sugars and liquids from the rice and rice milk and coconut cream. I usually do a steep water discount and that was not possible for this challenge.

I infused the oils with the Jasmine tea, chrysanthemum flowers (tea), star anise, mint leaves and candied ginger. I think this also potentially contributed to the overheating issues.

I used Annatto for the first time.. and had my first real success with indigo powder. That was the biggest surprise for me. I anticipated a gray from the indigo and added poppy seeds to encourage a blue effect. Note both these natural colorants tend to accelerate the batter.

The essential oils used include ylang ylang, rosemary and lemongrass. I can't believe how much I like this eo combination. I think it goes well with the Jasmine theme. Ylang ylang eo is also known to cause acceleration- and it did. But- I was more prepared as this was my third attempt .

The top is decorated with an exotic oil drizzle of chinese rhubarb olive oil infusion and lovely red cranberry seeds.

Colorants : annatto infusion added at trace and indigo bloomed with hot water , mixed with oil and added at trace. The brightness of the natural colors are amazing. Annatto rocks and i have a love hate relationship with indigo.

Note: Poppy seeds-an additional food item were added to the indigo colored batter for a bluing effect.

Did you know annatto is used to color many foods- ie cheddar cheese.

Thank you for visiting !


cranberry seeds and rhubarb infusion oil drizzle

love the tops and sides too