This morning, Jonah and I decided to make up a batch of whipped body butter -- we were nearly out of the first batch we made a few months ago, and I wanted to give some little jars to all of my children's teachers as well (since we were moving to our new house right during Christmas, these will be...Happy Almost Spring! gifts.)
Have you ever wanted to try making some? This is only the second time we've made it, so I'm certainly not an expert, but here's what we did.
Cast of characters:
Sweet Almond Oil, Cocoa Butter, Coconut Oil (extra-virgin), Shea Butter (I use raw and unrefined, which has a strong olive oil-sort-of-smell, but you can get the milder refined version if you prefer), lemongrass essential oil (optional), fresh rosemary (optional).
It is easiest if you use a scale to measure out the solid fats before melting them down, but you can also just use a measuring cup after melting -- up to you. The ratio is: 1 part each cocoa butter, shea butter, coconut oil, sweet almond oil. (I weighed out 3.5 oz of each, because the NOW brand cocoa butter comes in a 7 oz container, and I liked the idea of using exactly half for one batch, because....I don't know, I'm weirdly neat like that.)
If you use 2 parts shea and cut out the cocoa, your body butter will be softer when it sets up, but I love the rich, natural chocolate scent so much, which is why I choose to include it.
Melt the cocoa butter in the microwave in 1 minute intervals, or gently in the top of a double boiler. Next, melt the shea butter in the microwave in 30 second intervals (it's much softer and takes less time). If you're using the double boiler, just add it to the nearly melted cocoa butter. Next, add Sweet Almond Oil and fresh rosemary (if using), and allow it to steep for at least 15 minutes. Since I was using other scented ingredients, I'm not sure this was really strong enough to make a difference, so I might not do this step again. Strain out solids.
Add the infused oils back to the mixing bowl, then add the coconut oil as a solid, and use an immersion blender to thoroughly combine it.
(Technically, the warmth of the other oils should melt the coconut, but in my last batch it left little coconut oil "nubs" throughout, and since this was a gift, I wanted it to be ultra-smooth. Alternately, just melt the coconut and pour it in -- it'll just take longer for the whole thing to cool down enough to whip later.) Add lemongrass essential oil (if using). I used 7-10 drops, but add it slowly until you have the strength you want.
Leave the oil mixture out to cool on the counter for 30 minutes to 1 hour -- do not refrigerate to speed this up, or it could harden around the edges and make the final product lumpy...then you'd have to melt it all down and start the cooling again. No fun.
Once it is opaque and slightly viscous, begin whipping (I love my KitchenAid mixer. After about 10 minutes, it should look exactly like a whipped frosting, and smell just as delicious.
Probably don't decide to taste it though. It looks good and feels good, but taste...not so much.
Now scoop it into jars, and you're DONE!
Use sparingly -- this stuff is intense moisture!