Labneh is an incredibly versatile strained yoghurt cheese. It is very easy to make with rich, creamy texture and a slightly tart flavour. It can served as part of a cheese platter, used as a dip or added to sautéed green vegetables. It’s great on toast and delicious with honey and stewed fruits. Labneh rolled into balls and stored in a beautiful, herb-infused olive oil makes a wonderful gift.
Recipe created by Nourish cook and Dietitian, Clare Gray
Serves enough for about 6 medium jars
Preparation Time: 10 minutes
1kg Greek yoghurt
1 teaspoon finely ground sea salt
500ml good quality extra virgin olive oil
4 tablespoons roughly chopped herbs (parsley, tarragon, coriander, chives, thyme) zest of 1 lemon
6 small red chillies
Place the yoghurt and salt in a large bowl and mix together well.
Line a sieve with several layers of muslin and place over a mixing bowl.
Add the yoghurt mixture into it.
Tie the sides of the muslin together and hang from a shelf in the fridge or tie to the end of a rolling pin or wooden spoon with a bowl underneath to collect the whey.
Leave to hang for 2-3 days.
Open the muslin and serve as you like.
If you choose to make balls from the labneh, use a teaspoon to scoop off pieces and using the palms of your hands, roll them into balls of about a 2cm diameter.
Place the labneh balls into sterilised jars.
Whisk the oil together with the chopped herbs, lemon zest and oil.
Pour over the labneh and place a small, whole chilli in each jar and seal the jar.
Allow to marinate for at least 8 hours.
The labneh will keep for up to 2 weeks in the refrigerator.