How to Make Labneh- a creamy Middle Eastern Yogurt Dip ( or cheese) – perfect for your Mezze platters.
- 32 ounces plain, full-fat yogurt ( 4 cups yogurt makes 2 cups labneh)
- scant, 1 teaspoon salt
- splash lemon juice (for extra tang)
- lemon zest
- fresh or dried herbs
- 1 clove garlic, finely minced
Optional Labneh Dip Toppings:
Stir salt into the yogurt, right in the container, mixing well.
Pour into a kitchen towel ( or cheesecloth 2-3 layers thick) set over a strainer, set over a bowl, with ample room to collect 2 cups of liquid underneath. Gather the towel corners together, twist to close and set a canned good, overtop for weight. Set this in the fridge or cool place in your kitchen for 24 hours. Pour out the whey ( or save for another use) Check consistency.
If using as a dip, I find 24 hours is enough time. If wanting a thicker cheese-like consistency, feel free to strain another 24 hours.
To make the dip, spread out the labneh into a shallow bowl or plate ( you should have about 2 cups). Make a well in the center with the back of a spoon for the olive oil. Drizzle with olive oil and add fresh herbs and sprinkle with spices. Add any additional toppings you like olives, pinenuts, tomatoes… have fun with it!
Serve with bread, pita, crackers…
If going the sweet route, skip the oil, add a drizzle of warm honey and add fresh roasted fruit (figs, grapes, plums, etc) sprinkle with chia seeds – really nice for brunch affair! Served with muffins, scones or morning breads.