My favourite new way of fermenting

food health Oct 10, 2016

I'm sure you've heard me go on about my Onggi. How could you not... I tell everybody about this beautiful, hand-crafted fermenting pot from Korea.

You can buy Onggi in the UK here >>>

When Yoonseon of Elief first invited me to try out the Onggi, I was a little sceptical to say the least. Why would I want anything else to ferment in, than my Kilner jars? But Yoonseon suggested I give it a try and I was quite curious. 


I loved the idea of a pot that was water tight but breathing. That was hand-made of biodegradable materials based on a tradition that is several thousand years old. Onggi's are especially designed to create the balanced micro-climate required to optimum fermentation. On top of that the fermentation gets better and better with every fermentation process. Basically the micro-porous structure of the Onggiretains the enzymes, bacteria or yeast from previous fermentations. It's a bit like inoculating your compost bin with a bit of compost from the previous batch. 


So I tried it and the result was amazing. I made one large batch of sauerkraut and then fermented half of it in Onggi and half of it in a glass Kilner jar. They both were left to ferment for 7 days. The difference was really surprising to me. Basically the Onggi batch was a lot more subtle in flavour, less acidic. And, like it said on the box, the batches are getting better and better every time. I also find that it doesn't need to ferment quite as long. I think the shape of the Onggi creates more warms inside the vegetables, so that's perhaps the reason. 

I also love the beauty of the material and the shape of the Onggi. There is something very Zen-like when you work with it. And you know what I always say about putting love into your food. Well, the Onggi really supports you in doing that. 


When we ferment food probiotics are created that boost the body’s digestive processes and inoculates the gut with good bacteria.


So what is Onggi exactly?

Onggi is far superior to conventional ceramic, glassware or plastic containers. It is a traditional Korean earthenware with a microporous structure that creates the delicately balanced micro climate necessary for safe and successful fermentation. The Onggi is made from clay and sand and has a special water-based glaze that consists of wood ash and plant leaves. This creates a breathing product, free of heavy metals and toxic compounds. 

How to use Onggi

Below are two videos where I demonstrate how to use the Onggi. One is for making pink sauerkraut and the other is a quick and easy 'Kimchee' recipe. 


You can buy Onggi in the UK here >>>


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