Here we give you a labneh recipe to make labneh cheese, a fantastic idea for a healthy breakfast, a quick dinner, a snack, or mezza. Labneh, labne or labaneh as it’s called in Arabic, is very popular in Lebanon, Syria and Palestine.
The consistency of labneh is creamy. It reminds a little bit of Philadelphia cream cheese. You can make it at home with no hassle and no time, and you’ll always have fresh healthy cheese. A good yogurt, or laban as it’s called in Arabic, and salt are the two ingredients you need.
Generally, this yogurt cheese is made with ewe’s milk, but if you don’t have sheep’s milk, use cow’s milk, it also tastes great. In Lebanon, when labneh is made of goat milk it’s called anbariz.
For making labneh cheese, the yogurt should be full cream yogurt. And if you don’t make your own yogurt, try to buy the best you can find.
Yields about 2 cups
- 6 cups full cream laban or yogurt
- 2 teaspoons salt
- A cheese cloth or muslin cloth
- A large bowl
- A whisk or fork
How to make yogurt cheese
Preparation time: 5 minutes (plus 12 hours for draining)
- Put the yogurt in a large bowl. Add the salt and beat it for a few minutes with a whisk or a fork.
- Line a colander with the cheesecloth or muslin cloth. If you want to capture the whey, put the colander inside a large bowl, otherwise, put it in the sink.
- Slowly pour the beaten yogurt. Gather up the corners of the cloth and tie it up with a piece of string. Suspend over a bowl to collect the whey that drips.
- Leave it to drain for 12 hours. Straining it overnight is great. You have fresh yogurt cheese in the morning.
Spread it on pita bread with some olive oil. Or use a toast or another bread. Or you could quickly rub a bread slice with tomato and sprinkle olive oil and a pinch of salt as the Catalans do, and spread the yogurt cheese on it. Glorious!
Do you know a different labneh recipe? An idea to combine it with other Mediterranean food? Share it with us in the comments below.