Frequently asked questions about fermentation

Need help for trouble shooting? Be sure to ask us. You will get answers for your questions from our partners and experienced fermentation experts. Make your fermentation experience easier and more pleasant !


Where is eliefs Onggi from ?

eliefs Onggi is a quality product made in Korea, produced to high standards in quality, health (no use of heavy metals) and with respect to the environment. Our partner company is one of the best Onggi suppliers in Korea - founded in collaboration with a Onggi master hand and producing Onggi for longer than 20 years by now.

Why Onggi based fermentation is better?

Based on the culmination of several thousand years of experience in Korean fermentation, Onggi is perfectly designed to create the delicately balanced micro-climate required for the fermentation.

While Onggi is fully watertight, its micro-prpous structure allows for a balanced exchange of gases created during the fermentation process. A traiditional combination of its natural materials and the specifics of the firing process makes this possible.

Many studies show that Onggi-based fermentation is far superior to conventional ceramic, glassware or plastic containers in the creation of probiotics.

Learn a story of old Korean guy how Onggi based fermentation changed his life forever.
Onggi, a Healthier and Superior Container

How to take most advantage with Onggi ?

It is better to ferment foods in Onggi for longer time to make them more probiotic rich and more flavorful. We recommend using Onggi for Kimchi, sauerkraut, vegetables, vinegar, soysauce, pepper chilly sauce, yellow bean sauce, or fruit wine rather than for kefir, yoghurt and etc. that need short fermentation.

Can I put Onggi in the fridge ?

Sure, no problem at all and we actually even recommend it for easier fermentation - especially during summer.
In Korea, Onggi is traditionally stored outdoor through all seasons, even during winter time.
Our Onggi is perfect size for fridge! Before putting Onggi in the fridge, make sure to leave fermented food for several days in room temperature for optimal fermentation process. One thing to remember, the longer you ferment your food in Onggi, the richer is the taste and flavour of your fermented foods.

Can you make color of Onggi different ?
Onggi is  made of 100% natural materials based on 100% natural glazing. Therefore, it is not possible to make the Onggi colorful. Yet it can be slightly different from the batch to another.
Can I use Onggi as storage ?
Yes, you can. In Korea, Onggi is also used for storing rice, garlic, onion or ginger, too. They will stay fresher in Onggi, thanks to microporous structure of it.
Can this only be used for kimchi ?
Onggi is traditionally used not only for making Kimchi but also for fermenting other vegetables or fruits, vinegar, soy sauce, bean or chilly paste and etc.


How to prevent mold ?

1) Salt cabbage well with proper sea salt.
2) Cover the Kimchi in Onggi with green leaves of salted cabbage, and then put some extra salt on the leaves. It is wisdom from Kimchi-maker in Korea, country of origin of Kimchi and it helps a lot ! In Korea, they make Kimchi for long term preservation a bit more salty and the Kimchi get less salty once it is fermented.
3) Make your Kimchi and put it in your Onggi. Store your Onggi in the room temperature for 2-4 days till your Kimchi is slightly and nicely fermented. Put your Onggi in the fridge (Don't forget to close the Onggi mouse with plastic wrap to prevent smell issue.) Start tasting after several days and enjoy your Kimchi !

How to create my own Kimchi recipe ?
There are hundreds of different Kimchi recipes in Korea and even each family has their own. It is upon what's the main ingredients (e.g. cabbage, cucumber or radish etc.) or small addition on traditional Kimchi recipe (e.g. addition of match sticks of apple, pear, small oyster and etc.). Try your own !
Can I skip rice porridge ?

It is okay to skip rice porridge but better to add because it helps:
- to remove unripe smell and therefore make your Kimchi taste/smell better (add some if you use fish sauce or something with strong smell.)
- to easily mix all the ingredients together and get your Kimchi better and tasty color
- to ferment Kimchi properly. (If it is too much, Kimchi can be fermented a bit quicker.)

What is the best way to ferment Kimchi in Onggi ?

Leave your Onggi in room temperature for 3-5 days (depending on the temperature and season) so that the Kimchi in Onggi is slightly fermented. And then, put your Onggi in the fridge for 2-3 weeks and start eating. You will see the huge difference. Basically, the longer food is fermented Onggi, the better the taste is.

What else can I do with Kimchi ?

Kimchi itself is already very delicous, probiotic rich super food. Yet, there are many other food you can make with Kimchi, if you want to do experiment. How about something like Kimchi pancake, Kimchi salad, Kimchi pried rice, Kimchi stew ?


Do I need to buy weight ?

Traditional Korean Onggi, and accordingly also the eliefs Onggi is prepared with lid - without weight. However, we found many of our customers use their own ideas and wisdom for making Sauerkraut in Onggi, preventing mold.
For example, cover your vegetables with leaves, put pebbles on them, and then close the lid. Or, just put a water-filled jar of jam/pickles on the sauerkraut (fit to mouth of Onggi). Leave it at room temperature for several days, remove pebbles or the water-filled jar.
Cover Onggi with the lid, and then put the Onggi with sauerkraut in the fridge.

Want to learn how to make Sauerkraut in Onggi?
Check out Gabriela's video here.

I made sauerkraut in my onggi a few days ago. Now there is foam on top of the liquid. is that normal?

The foam itself is a good sign of healthy and good fermentation process of your kraut. So, very normal and nothing to worry! Please use a clean spoon and skim of the foam at the top as that can harbour bad bacteria.

What is the best way to prevent mold during summer season ?
Like we do for Kimchi, Store your Sauerkraut in the room temperature for several days till your Sauerkraut is slightly and nicely fermented. Put your Onggi in the fridge and ferment it checking the progress.

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