You could come to the conclusion that “sampling it all” means “sampling all the food.” Which it does, but I do sample a few other things too.
1 c (or 2/3 of a bar) Fels Naptha soap
1 c washing soda
1 c borax powder
1-2 T essential oil (optional)
16 quarts of water
5 gallon pail with a cover
Chop or grate Fels Naptha and add to 3 quarts of water. Heat and stir until the soap has melted. Pour 2 quarts of hot water into your pail. To the Fels Naptha and water add washing soda, stir, and add borax powder, and stir. When all ingredients have dissolved, add to pail with hot water and stir. Add an additional 11 quarts of water and stir. This will likely look like soapy water with a few bubbles and possibly some globs of gel. Add essential oil if desired and stir. This is laundry soap! The laundry soap may gel more as the solution cools off.
Use 1/2 cup of laundry soap per load. It works in both vertical and horizontal (HE) washing machines.
I’ve used a mix of soaps in place of Fels Naptha with good success. It is especially pleasing to chop up marine-animal-shaped or heart-shaped decorative soap and use it. The little bits of bar soap that are hard to use work great. Homemade soap works. For chopping, it works best if the soap is dried out. The smaller the soap pieces are, the less time and energy it will take to melt them.
I don’t bother to stir the soap once I’ve made it. Some soap has more gel, some has less. I haven’t noticed a difference in the cleaning.
Some people, such as my mom, will find that using this soap makes them itchy.
Keep the soap covered and away from children and pets to avoid everything from drowning to messes.
My box of washing soda has become a hard mass, perhaps because it is stored above the washing machine. I should try put it in a moisture proof container next time.
You can find safety information for Fels Naptha, Borax, and washing soda from the US Dept of Health and Human Services.