Tuesday, February 03, 2009

And more of Vanilla Spuds and the Necessity of Uniform Heat

I can't believe that it has been so long since I posted last. Time certainly flies when you're taking naps.

A few posts back, I showed a picture of some vanilla scented spuds (Vanilla Select - Brambleberry). Here is the picture again to remind you how the spuds self colored. As we know, vanilla or fragrances with vanilla notes, can cause coloration from light tan to dark fudge brown.

Yet as you can clearly see, some of the spuds turned out to be half brown and half cream.


We haven't had to make Spuds since October 2008. Our first batch of 2009 was also colored like this batch, so on the 2nd 2009 batch, we put a quilt on the floor, an electric blanket over the quilt and then another quilt over the electric blanket (just to protect the electric blanket from getting any soap spill). This enabled us to provide a uniform warmth around the silicone molds. The following picture shows how nicely uniform in color the resulting spuds were. And this was mostly true across the entire batch.


The only spuds that weren't uniform in color were those in molds that allowed a little leakage of the soap so that the funnel spout at the top of the spud wasn't full of soap. When the funnel spout doesn't have the soap plug (take a look at the middle spud still in the half mold) then the soap from that mold tends to not be uniform in color. See how light the plug is compared to the main spud soap?


I remembered Sue K. from the Soapnuts email list mentioning how that she thought the heating of the soap mix had something to do with the coloration of the soap. And I believe that she is spot on, especially after seeing how uniform in color this batch of spuds were when we were able to maintain a stable heat environment.