Saturday, September 18, 2010

Labneh Yogurt Cheese

I've had some extra milk to use up around here so I made some Labneh Yogurt Cheese. First, make a batch of homemade yogurt or buy some plain flavored yogurt from the store. Line a sieve or colander with cheesecloth and set it over a bowl. Pour the yogurt in and place in the fridge.

Check on it every day or so to be sure it's not sitting in the whey - the clear-ish liquid it drains off. After about three days it should look something like this:

My two quarts of yogurt made about 1 1/2 cups of cheese. I save the whey in a quart jar to use in lacto-fermented condiment recipes (like ketchup and mayo) or to soak my grains. At this point, think about what you'd like to use your cheese for.

I wanted a Mediterranean-style cheese spread so I added in kalamata olives, sundried tomatoes, dehydrated garlic and some sea salt. If I were going to use it as a cream-cheese substitute, I would have added some vanilla and a bit of fine-ground salt. You may also add your seasonings at the beginning when you first start draining the yogurt, but know that your whey will come out flavored as well. Since I use my whey, I choose to add the flavors at the end.

I made a double batch of Naan Bread to go with it and served it in with cucumber and tomatoes. So yummy.

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