Labneh

If you’ve never tried labneh, you need to. It’s a type of Middle Eastern soft cheese made from strained yogurt.

I’ve seen it sold in specialty grocery stores but at a ridiculous price, so I’d recommend making it yourself at home. All you need is a high quality Greek yogurt – I look for a bio-diverse full fat, low sugar and high protein option, but really any will work – salt, a thick and clean tea towel, a strainer, a jar or a bowl, and some time.

The end result is a creamy, rich and delicious cream cheese which can be made into a probiotic-rich dip or cake frosting.

INGREDIENTS

900g Greek yogurt

2 tsp salt

Clean and thick tea towel

Large jar or strainer in a bowl

Rubber band to tie up the towel

*Results vary on yogurt used, however I find it usually reduces in volume by 1/3 to 1/2.

METHOD

Place your tea towel over your jar or strainer and bowl.

Mix salt into yogurt well, and pour into tea towel, gathering corners and tying tightly. You’ll notice off-white water start to drip out of the towel – this is the whey. It’s going to look weird, but bear with me.

Leave your yogurt ball over the jar or strainer in the fridge for 1 – 3 days (depending on your yogurt) until it’s firm to touch, and water has stopped dripping.

When you untie the towel, you should find a thick white yogurt-cheese similar in consistency to Philadelphia cream cheese.

At this point I usually mix in a little olive oil, garlic, salt and pepper and serve it as a dip, but I’ve also made a delicious cream cheese frosting out of it.

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