NOT our soap: our camera is lost somewhere amongst the kitchen clutter. Image from here.
Normally my kitchen and my garden are my queendoms: places where I reign supreme, and often quite solo, in my tasks. This holiday season however I have company in the kitchen, and it’s welcome, it’s crowded and sometimes it’s a bit loud with our quarrels…as queen, you see, I am not very used to challenges to my authority.
We make all kinds of goodies this time of year. This year, we’re experimenting with goat’s milk soapmaking. I used one cooked/heated recipe with beef tallow that I found in the back of my favorite goat-y book (Goats Produce Too), and Tom made an uncooked one with cocoa butter and olive oil. Soapmaking, despite its outcome, is a sloppy endeavor. Tom made wood box frames for the molds: you unscrew them once the soap has hardened. Oh, and one thing we hadn’t considered? Soap needs to cure for about a month before use! whoops.
My daughter and I have been making gifts for the CSA and for her teachers. Our weekend task was chevre truffles and spiced chevre balls (okay, the latter needs a better name; basically they’re my regular herbed chevre rolled in a powdered spice/salt mix, bite-sized, entirely too edible). We also made more cajeta (goat’s milk caramel) and we canned it so it doesn’t need to be eaten right away.
In point of fact, I find that it helps if not all gifts need to be eaten right away: like the canned cajeta, the truffles and (cough) balls are frozen. So is the chicken liver pate and the goose rillettes; hiding under their layer of clarified butter and gently frozen solid, these jars’ contents won’t expand and break upon freezing. It also helps a tired queen stage her production throughout this busy season.
I like sharing my kitchen for this gift-making. But does it mean I need to clean up twice the mess? Uh, yes it does. Happy crafting, all.