Most of the time, you’ll find it sold in little balls rolled in spices (like zaatar) and drenched in oil. It is the perfect LOW FAT cream cheese replacement and, you can use it as you would with regular cream cheese.
Labneh is simply strained greek yogurt (or any other yogurt you like) where the whey (the liquid) is drained. It finishes with this half cream cheese and half goat cheese consistency that has the nice and distinct sour flavour of the yogurt.
Obviously, if you make your labneh using sweetened and flavoured yogurt, it wont be as sour and will keep the sweet flavours.
Do not throw away the whey. Not only it is bad for the environment but, it will soon become your next favourite ingredient in baked goods to give them that extra softness or on it’s own or in your other recipes. There’s a LOT you can make with whey if you google. It will freeze for months and keep in the fridge for about a week.
Flavour your labneh with pretty much every you can think of… the photo below is rolled in kochukaru to give it a nice and bright spicy flavour before being drenched in avocado oil.
Maybe the next cool thing to add to your cheese platter, who knows *^_^*
- Low fat (or no fat) plain Greek yogurt
- Cheese Cloth folded to have at least 4 layers thick
- ½ to 1 teaspoon of salt (optional)
- high quality oil
- 1 mixing bowl properly sized to hold the colander on top and big enough to capture all the whey.
- - Prepare your whey recipient, place the colander on top of the bowl with 4 layered cheese cloth inside. Make sure you have extra cloth on all sides to be able to fold it over the yogurt.
- - Stir in the salt before transferring your yogurt in the cheese cloth.
- - Fold over the sides of the cheese cloth, locking in your yogurt. Add a weight on top and let it drain for a minimum of 24 to 30hours undisturbed.
- - Once the time is done, the texture should already be close to a cream cheese or goat cheese and your recipient should have a cloudy liquid at the bottom. That's the whey you want to keep and use.
- - Squeeze a bit of the left over whey, with your hands, and voilà! ...You got fresh Labneh just waiting to be flavoured.