Every single winter I put on weight. It’s like freaking clockwork, I tell you. First up we have Christmas and everybody’s making all sorts of food and sometimes you go to more than one Christmas dinner and there’s CANDY freaking everywhere.
Then it’s New Year’s Eve and maybe you resolve to lose weight but to get started you first have to take out all of the bad stuff in your fridge and pantry, right? Now it makes more sense to toss the stuff but I say waste not, want not :) Basically my first 2 weeks of the year are eating total CRAP.
And, oh, what do we have here? Valentine’s Day is right around the corner with its pretty heart-shaped boxes full of SUGAR. Now I don’t believe Mr. Rob has EVER purchased me any candy for the holiday of lurve but it’s probably because after 3 months of eating junk and busting out my “winter weight jeans” he’s tired of hearing about the size of my ass. I can’t say that I blame him :)
This year is no different. I binged at Christmas, cleaned out the pantry and freezer in January and bought myself a divine box of Valentine chocolates before it was even February. Ugh. At this point, I’m kind of over sugar and chocolate and I wanted to celebrate one of the loveliest holidays (because there’s so much PINK!) in a low-cal sort of a way. And so I went to the store and bought a candy mold to make chocolate soaps in a little heart shaped candy box. But when I made them they were so small! You’d practically go through a single soap every time you washed your hands! This simply would not do!
And so I started to work this business out with things I already have on hand, ’cause that’s another one of my resolutions – buy less craft stuff and use more of the junk I’ve already got. It was a head scratcher but I suddenly remembered the round ball soap mold I got to make Halloween eyeball soaps last year. Remember those? Bingo, bango, all the pieces fell into place and I made the most adorable melt and pour chocolate truffle soaps. Want to make your own? Let’s get to it!
For this project you will need:
- Sphere silicone mold
- White melt and pour soap
- Mica powder pigment (as colorant)
- Fragrance oil
- Sanding sugar
- Rubbing alcohol in a spray bottle
First up this is the sphere mold I use. You can pick one up at pretty much any online soap making supply store.
Next up, mica pigment powder… After attempting to use my current stash of soap colorants, which did not include brown, I was frustrated and tired of wasting supplies and purchased a set of mica powders that included brown that was an amazing deal (even if one of the bags was half emptied into the box because it wasn’t sealed). Basically, Rob told me that if I mixed contrasting colors (like red and green or orange and blue) into my soap base the resulting color would be a muddy brown. But after mixing up tons of this junk and making some really weird looking colors that weren’t quite brown, at which point he told me that they would pretty much have to be across from each other perfectly on the color wheel. What the heck, dude? I’m just using what I’ve got and there’s nothing perfect about it!
Eventually, I got a sort of a brown but in most light, it actually looks sort of green. Those are my itty bitty chocolate mold soaps, by the way. Cute but too tiny.
Ready to get started in earnest? Melt a few chunks of white soap (mine is shea butter) in a glass measuring cup, heat your soap for 15-30 second intervals in the microwave stirring between each blitz. Once liquid, color your soap with brown mica powder.
Just FYI, this was my first experience coloring soaps with mica and, I’ve gotta tell you, a little goes a long way. I started off well but as I kept going and working late into the night I accidentally dropped most of my powder into the last batch of my soap and wasted a ton of it. I’d strongly suggest using the spoons that come with your set (or grab one from your kitchen) to prevent this kind of wasteful situation.
When you first start with the mica it kind of balls up into the melted soap and doesn’t seem like it’s going to mix in, but lo and behold, eventually it will. Just be patient, add a little mica at a time and feel free to heat the soap in the microwave again to loosen it up if it starts to set up on you before you get your perfect chocolate color.
Pour your brown soap into your molds.
I found that my favorite “truffles” were layered with pinks, white and brown. To layer your colors allow the first layer begin setting up and then spray with rubbing alcohol. This is very important. The alcohol allows the second layer of soap to bind to the first and without it, the two layers will peel apart. It’s kind of a disaster. You don’t need tons, one spritz per sphere should do the trick.
Pour your additional colors and spray the last layer with another spritz of alcohol to eliminate the bubbles to create a nice, smooth surface.
Allow the mold to sit a few minutes so the soap can begin solidifying. At this point you can transport your mold to the refrigerator so that your soaps will set up even more quickly.
Once your soaps are no longer warm to the touch through the silicone mold and appear to have become solid, push each shape from the mold. These spheres are the basis for your chocolate truffle soaps. Next we’ll decorate them…
Right before decorating you’ll need to spray your chocolate balls with a tiny amount of rubbing alcohol. If you spray a ton and it’s kind of drippy your decorations will fall off, so you just need a tiny, tiny spritz.
Using soap that is slightly cooled liquid make drips on top of the soap. While still wet, sprinkle sanding sugar (or sea salt would work too) on top of the decoration. Allow a few moments for the soap to set up and tap the excess sugar away. FYI, if your soap is too hot it won’t stick. It needs to be liquid but on the way to set back up so that it will actually grip the soap.
Another way of decorating your truffles is to use another silicone mold in a cute shape. Since this is for Valentine’s Day I’m using hearts. Once set pop your hearts out and smooth down any crazy edges with your finger. Spray a small amount of alcohol onto your soap ball and onto the back side of your heart. Apply a small dab of melted soap onto the back of the heart and press down onto the ball.
Clean up any soap that runs away from you with a q-tip or paint brush. This will keep your heart shapes nice and neat!
To present these truffles as a nice gift grab a heart shaped tin (mine is from Hobby Lobby) and some cupcake liners in an appropriate color.
Filling as much space as you can shove cupcake paper wrapped chocolates into the inside of the tin, much like a traditional box of chocolates.
Aren’t those just super cute? Would you know at first sight these guys aren’t actually chocolate but instead soap? I don’t think I would!
In fact, it might be a pretty good idea to let your Valentine know that these are NOT chocolate since they look (and smell) an awful lot like a traditional box of chocolate truffles! I mean, I’ve never tried washing my hands with chocolate, but I’m pretty sure it doesn’t get that nice, soapy lather, haha!