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Home-made Minted Labneh

Labneh is made by draining full cream yogurt for a few hours to remove its whey, resulting in a relatively thick consistency, i.e thicker than conventional yogurt but less firm than cheese), while preserving yogurt’s distinctive, sour taste.  Labneh is a popular mezze dish and sandwich ingredient in the Middle East.  It is usually eaten in a fashion similar to hummus, spooned on a plate and drizzled with olive oil and often, dried mint.

1 kg full cream plain yogurt
5 ml salt
60 ml fresh mint, finely chopped
15 ml dried mint
2.5 ml crushed garlic (optional)

  1. Line a strainer with a few layers of cheesecloth or muslin cloth  and set the strainer over a deep bowl.  It should be deep enough so that the bottom of the strainer is a few millimeters above the bottom of the bowl, where the strained liquid or whey will collect.
  2. Stir the salt into the yogurt, then transfer the yogurt into the lined strainer.
  3. Fold the ends of the cheesecloth or cloth over the yogurt and refrigerate for at least 8 to 12 hours.  Or longer if you want a thicker labneh.
  4. Remove the strained cheese from the cloth and transfer it to a bowl.  Set it aside.
  5. Add the rest of the ingredients to the bowl and mix well.
  6. Cover and refrigerate for at least an hour before serving.
  7. Transfer to a serving dish, drizzle with olive oil and serve with store-bought or Home-made Pita Bread.

Shop-bought Greek yogurt can be used if pressed for time.