Over the past year, I’ve become more and more aware of two things regarding my eating. 1. I LOVE greek yoghurt. Love love like can’t go a week without having it on everything love.
2. I’m more and more horrified by the additives you’ll find in packaged food. A quick scan of most labels began to horrify me, as I realised how little control I had over what was going into my food.
So I did what any food obsessed gal does – googled how to make (basic) gnocchi, pastas, bread, pizza dough and other goodies from scratch at home and got stuck into it! The next item on my homemade hit list was labneh.
Labneh is a Middle Eastern cheese made from strained yoghurt. It’s a simple as straining the yoghurt it in the fridge for up to 72 hours. The whey is effectively strained away (hey!). It’s easily customisable, I added a dukkah coating to some and marinated the rest in olive oil and herbs (mmmmmm…).
The yoghurt can strain for a minimum of 4-5 hours which will achieve a creamy type spread, or up to 72 hours in which the labneh is very thick, dense, virtually dry and has a slightly sour taste. I straned mine for about 50 and it was perfect.
Tonight is New Years Eve. Of all the nights of the year, New Years Eve is but one of them. It’s exciting and scary at the same time but I am not going to bore you with all this ‘where did the year go’ talk, that’s like.. so 2014.
I’m going to be spending my NYE with some friends, very simple which is what I like. I needed to bring something along for the partayyy. This was the perfect opportunity to try a new recipe!
It’s an impressive party nibble which I rediscovered at Jackson’s recent family do, and is damn delicious on toast, crackers, a falafel salad, sandwiches and so on. Next time you want to create something slighty different that you can add your own flavour-spin to, give labneh a chance.
I have been having labneh on toast in the mornings which makes my day. You can also marinate with honey and cinnamon and make a dessert/muesli version! (exclude garlic in recipe below) I’ve gone labneh crazy!
What’s your go-to home made party dish? Let me know in the comments below.
Have a wonderful night and I’ll see you in 2015! Bec xo
For the labneh
- 1 kg greek style yoghurt
- 1 small garlic clove minced finely
- 1 tea spoon salt
- 1 cheese cloth muslin, clean tea towel or 2 chux wipes
- some string + wooden spoon
For the marinades (optional)
- dukkah for rolling
- fresh finely chopped rosemary
- olive oil
- Mix the minced garlic clove and salt into the yoghurt.
- Scrape the yoghurt into the tea towel/muslin/cloth.
- Tie the 4 corners together to form a hanging bag.
- Twist the cloth firmly and tie with string (pictured in post).
- Hang the ball from a wooden spoon and hang over a deep set bowl or strainer ensuring the ball doesn't touch the bottom.
- Allow it to drain for 4 hours to 72 in the fridge.
- Once desired consistency is achieved, cut tie and open cloth.
- With oiled hands, pinch coin sized pieces of labneh and gently roll into a ball.
- Coat in herbs/spices or marinade in olive oil. Labneh can hold in olive oil for up to 4 weeks in he fridge.
For a consistency of cream cheese/philadelphia strain for 24-48 hours.
I strained mine for 50-52 hours and they were firm enough to roll into spreadable balls.
For sweet labneh, no garlic but stick to same process. Drizzle with honey and a little pinch of cinnamon. Adapted from from The New Feast