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Middle Eastern Labne (Labneh)

Labne is a Middle Eastern yogurt that has been salted and strained overnight. The straining process helps the yogurt take on a cream cheese consistency, with many recipes comparing Labne to a "healthy cream cheese alternative". I've also seen Labne referred to as a type of cheese, which it certainly leans towards thanks to the salty and creamy texture.


I’ve never made Labne before but after searching Western Massachusetts for a container of it with little luck, I was so excited to learn there’s an easy way to do it at home! This is by no means "my" recipe, but after watching other recipes videos and reading up on the dish, I'm excited to share what I learned (full instructions below the video):





What you'll need:

Full fat, whole milk Greek Yogurt

Salt

Cheese cloth or a very fine mesh strainer (I used both)

Large bowl


Additions:

Zaatar

Smoked paprika

Course salt

Extra virgin olive oil



Salt the yogurt and stir. Spoon the salted yogurt into a strainer and/or cheese cloth and, if using cheese cloth, tie the ends together to create a yogurt "ball". Place the ball over a bowl, making sure it's suspended (you can balance a strainer over the bowl, or tie the yogurt ball to a wooden spoon to help it suspend over the bowl). Place your straining yogurt in the refrigerator and let strain for 24 hours or until it takes on a thicker, cream cheese-like consistency. Enjoy immediately with your favorite EVOO or spices, or store in the fridge for up to a week or so.




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