Greek yoghurt is all the rage, just in case you are living under a rock somewhere. I had my first experience with it years ago when an old friend of mine introduced me to this pizza place(for my Halifax crew, it’s Euro Pizza) that has the best tzatziki! We would order their greek wraps which weighed about a pound and they were drenched in this stuff. It literally is as thick as cream cheese and what makes it even more impressive is they make it on the daily! For dessert they served this same, thick homemade yoghurt topped with honey and walnuts. This is the stuff that dreams are made of, thick, creamy, delicious dreams.
Sorry – I got sidetracked by memories of dairy. Back to Labneh which is Lebanese in origin but very much the same product. It’s technically a strained yoghurt which I like to call a cheese. It’s a little tangy like yoghurt but it’s extremely creamy and slightly textural like a fine goat cheese. I made this ‘cheese’, for the first time, last weekend. Believe me it actually wasn’t hard or complicated just took some time and patience. I decided since it was my first cheese making experience that I would stick to the basics. However, I would highly recommend playing with this cheese as a base for dips, or creating new flavourful spreads by adding a few simple ingredients.
- 2 squares of cheesecloth, approximately 2′ by 2′
- 1 500ml (2 cups) container of yoghurt, I used 0% PC Plain Greek yoghurt
- 1 tsp of sea salt
- a chopstick or a wooden spoon
- a tall bowl, I used a juice pitcher but an ice cream container would work as well
Seasoning/ Serving Ideas
Traditionally this is served with olive oil and olives. I have also seen it served rolled into small balls and covered with fresh herbs like mint or in paprika. I simply dressed mine with olive oil and more sea salt and served with sweet chili brown rice crisps. This cheese lends itself so well just about any flavour you can imagine, I plan to experiment a lot with labneh in the future.