Sunday, 17 January 2016

The icing on the cake?

They got rather excited when they saw me mixing up a big bowl of icing last week. We didn't have a Christmas cake last year - had I made a belated one in January after all? Complete with royal icing? They asked hopefully.

No it's something far more useful than that. With an under sink cupboard that's bursting with eco cleaning product ingredients following my over calculations for a WI workshop back in 2013, I'm using up some bicarb in a home-made cream cleaner. The recipe comes from Jo in Tasmania, at her All the Blue Day blog - she's got a special tab on her blog right here with information on planet-friendly cleaning products. (Jo's a thoughtful blogger and true wordsmith - quality writing, always, as well as quality cleaner recipes).


Jo's cream cleaner recipe
1 cup bicarb
1 tablespoon cream of tartar
10 mls castile soap
40-50ml water
10 drops clove oil

When did I ever follow a recipe properly though? I don't have any cream of tartar, so I didn't bother with that. Nor the castile soap, which I replaced with Ecover washing up liquid. Clove oil, surprisingly, I did have, and that gives the product a hygienic and Christmassy smell. Although it's in the recipe for its mould inhibiting properties, I'm sure you could replace it with another essential oil, or even leave it out altogether.

And the icing on the cake? When brushed into a  grubby school shirt collar, the cream cleaner works its magic as much as on bathrooms and kitchens. 


That's the 'after'. You'll have to imagine the 'before' - not difficult to do:
12 year old boy + white shirt = grubby collars.

Thank you Jo!

11 comments:

  1. What a disappointment for you family. While I'm sure they appreciate clean collars, they probably were hoping for cake. Maybe next time.

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    1. You induced enough guilt to make me bake a cake yesterday! No icing though, not even a layer of cream cleaner on top.

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  2. Hmm not sure it would taste that good! I use bicarb for all my cleaning here including my hair! We buy it in huge quantities. I have not tried making a cream cleaner tho' as I find neat bicarb works for most things, however I am liking the idea of clove oil being a mould inhibiter. We use white vinegar for that usually but maybe with some drops of clove oil in it it might be even better.

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    1. I use neat bicarb in the kitchen for pans etc - see Jo's comment below for endorsement of the mould inhibiting properties!

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  3. What a surprise to pop over to investigate cake, and find my bathroom cleaner:) I am so impressed to see that you have been thinking outside the box with it, and just as I was experimenting with making my own stain removers! This is brilliant - I'll give it a go right away:)

    Btw, the clove oil really is brilliant for inhibiting mould - since I have started using it I have had no new mould in the bathroom at all.

    And I know you don't like following recipes (honestly, I am the same) but if you ever happen to do so, the cream of tartar gives it a paste consistency, which I like because it stays on the grout in the shower. I often leave it there for 15 mins or so to let the bicarb do its whitening thing.

    So glad it works for you:)

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    1. Glad to hear about your positive experiences on the mould situation. I take your point re the cream of tartar - I used to use cream of tartar to make gluten free baking powder but now most baking powder seems to be gluten free so I don't make my own very often. Perhaps I could try baking powder in the cream cleaner or is that thinking too far outside the box?!

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    2. Glad to hear about your positive experiences on the mould situation. I take your point re the cream of tartar - I used to use cream of tartar to make gluten free baking powder but now most baking powder seems to be gluten free so I don't make my own very often. Perhaps I could try baking powder in the cream cleaner or is that thinking too far outside the box?!

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  4. Oo this is a great tip thanks! I have heard about clove oil for mould but I googled it and I couldn't see any for less than £3. Where did you get yours from? xx

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  5. Hi Sarah, Haven't heard from you in a while. Hope all is well with you!

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