Woah! January just jumped away. Still I haven’t posted any recipe for the blog. The one I wish to post is not about food. Though I have so many recipes pending, I feel like sharing this non-food recipe. Well, I know this is a food blog but this recipe uses raw materials that we usually bin or just ignore after it serves the purpose. This recipe is for a BATH SALT. Yes! you heard me right. If food feeds the stomach, a good bath scrub/salt feeds your skin. Not totally, partially it does! I make my own bath salts/scrubs with what’s available in the pantry. I made a big batch and gifted it to my blogger friends when we met over dinner. I love ORANGES as it’s refreshing tangy fragrance perks me up.
Things needed. Yields a lot of bath salt.
- Powdered dried orange peel (any citrus peel works fine) – 1 cup or more.
I use a lot of oranges/tangerines/clementines/mandarins/kumquats/grapefruits/lemons and and limes. I juice fresh fruits. No tetra packs in my pantry. I don’t have the heart to throw away the peels. Hence, it’s dried and powdered. Beware of the wax used on the fruits. Scrape gently and remove the layer of wax. Remove the fiber attached to the peel. It’s alright to have the pith. Slice it lengthwise or however. Sun dry the peel till it’s completely done or else it will start growing mold. Blitz the dried peel in the mixer and powder. Coarsely powdered peel is good for scrubs, finely powdered peel is good for bath soaks.
- Epsom salt – 3 cups or more.
Epsom salt (Magnesium Sulfate) has a wide range of benefits. I bought 3 big packs and use it for making bath salts, in my patio garden as a fertilizer and for scrubbing stubborn grease. It works wonders for sore muscles. It naturally sedates your nervous system and draw toxins out of your body if applied to swollen muscles. 2 cups of Epsom salt dissolved in the bath tub with warm water, soak for 10-15 mins. Do this after a tiring day. Trust me, you’ll sleep like a baby. It’s better than a glass of wine. * You can substitute granulated sugar for Epsom salt. Sugar makes a great scrub sans the function of muscle relaxation.
- Neutral flavored oil – 3/4 cup or more as required.
I’ve used grape seed oil and sweet almond oil so far. These are good carrier oils. Try not to use olive oil as it masks the flavor of the citrus peel. I haven’t tried using coconut oil. For now I would stick to grape seed oil as it moisturizes the skin without being greasy.
- Orange oil – 10 drops
I used orange oil that is suitable for aromatherpy. The therapeutic properties of orange oil are antiseptic, anti-depressant, anti-spasmodic, anti-inflammatory, carminative, diuretic and sedative. It assists with cold and flu, eliminates toxins, boost the lymphatic and immune system and helps ease nervous tension and stress. Oh yes! STRESS reliever is what I need.
- Reusable or recycled containers
I reused the body butter containers from The Body Shop. I never throw away cute looking containers. The labels are removed, washed and dried, then used to store things such as small buttons, safety pins and hair clips, craft items etc. I have half a dozen of these containers and used it for packing the salt. I loved the bright colored containers to match the product inside.
- Food labels or any sticky label
I used the easy peel jam bottle labels. You can use anything that can be used as a label. It just makes the packaging look fancy and appealing.
It’s easy peasy and takes less than 10 mins to put together. Place the Epsom salt in a big bowl. Stir in the powdered dried peel using a ladle or big spoon. As you stir, drizzle the oil over the mix until it uniformly coats the salt granules. Mix until it’s all combined. Dribble in the essential oil (orange oil here) drop by drop and mix well. Tada! the bath salt is ready. You can adjust the amount of oil used to make a gooey bath scrub or slightly wet bath salt or a dry bath soak. Play around with the amount of ingredients and concoct what pleases you.
- Do not use artificial colors to make the scrub look pretty. The whole point of doing it at home is to keep it simple and au naturale. Artificial colors will leave a stain on your skin and on your bath towel. Skin being the largest organ in your body, it absorbs what is applied topically. We don’t want crap on our skin. Do we?
- Try not to use artificial flavoring. Natural ingredients when used in right proportion produces an awesome fragrance. Stick to nature’s gift. You won’t regret.
- I have tried the same with culinary lavender (not the ones in the potpourri) and vanilla pods (after using beans). Both are just wonderful. Lavender is sleep inducing and vanilla made me smell like a cupcake. Just heavenly!
- This can be stored for a year in zip lock bags. You may need a couple of cups for a bath soak, so make large amounts and store it in a cool dark place.
PS – The kumquats were used as a prop, just to match the swatch. It is not a component of the final product. And these are not for sale. These were exclusively made and packed for a bunch of friends. It makes a good gift, not too personal and not too lame. What say? Now buckle up and start from scratch. It’s worth the effort!