I’m afraid I may sound like a bit of a broken record on the “I miss summer” theme, but it continues to be true (at least we’re getting close, now). I also miss camping, which is something I only find I can do comfortably for about 3 months out of the year here. When I was making these bars I was thinking about a trip Craig & I took last summer to Spillimacheen, where I bought lots of beautiful honey from a local shop, and we had the most delicious smokey honey salsa ever (it kind of ended up being dinner).

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These lovely bars are reminiscent of a summer twilight campfire—smoke, pine, and hippies (perhaps from the next campsite?). They’re like a small burst of summer.

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I coloured this batch with clay. It’s mostly a darker green Australian clay, with just a hint of black clay whisked in—the idea was it’d look like smoke whisping through the bar. The trick is to get just the right trace so it stirs in as if it’s floating, but doesn’t sink out to the bottom.

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Campfire Soap

20% olive oil
20% soy bean oil (or olive oil)
25% coconut oil
15% shea butter
14% lard
5% castor oil
1% stearic acid (or round the lard up to 15%)

5% superfat (aka 5% lye discount)

Per 500g (1.1lbs) oils:

  • 20g commercial pine essential oil
  • 9g dark patchouli essential oil
  • 1g birch tar or vetiver essential oil
  • 1 tbsp dark green or brown clay (rhassoul or bentonite will work nicely)
  • ¼ tsp black iron oxide, Australian black clay, or activated charcoal

Calculate your recipe using SoapCalc to get your final, finite amounts of the fats, lye, and water.

Follow standard soap making procedure. At trace add the essential oils and the clay. Use an immersion blender to thoroughly blend the clay into the soap (otherwise you will have little clumps). Add the black colourant and lightly stir to create a light swirl (it’s supposed to look like smoke from a campfire).

Pour the soap into your mould.

Let saponify for 24 hours before un-moulding and slicing. Let cure for a minimum of three weeks before using. Enjoy!

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