is used in many lacto- to speed up the . It is a great addition to baked goods and smoothies and goes well as a replacement for vinegar in salad dressings. I make a lot of cheese, so I often have whey on hand as a by-product, but for those of you who don’t, here’s a quick and easy way to get your hands on it using shop-bought . You can also produce ‘” using this recipe, which is a lower calorie, healthy alternative to cream cheese. Cream cheese is made using rennet.  This cheese can be drained to the point where it has the same constancy, but the pH is lower and it retains the characteristic taste of yogurt. It is basically , a that is very popular in the middle East, without the salt. I often make a whole batch without the salt and store the whey for later use. If I want to make traditional Lebnah, I simply drain the yogurt to the point where I have sufficient whey for the recipe I need that day,  (many recipes require only 1/4 cup) then I stir in the salt and continue to drain. The remaining salted whey, I use for other purposes (my dogs and chickens love it!).  With or without salt, the cheese is delicious. You can flavour it by mixing in fresh or dried herbs, garlic, chilli flakes or any flavour you like.

Ingredients and Equipment 

– 1kg Organic natural live yoghurt (make approx 500g Labneh but will depend on type of yoghurt used and time spent.

– A colander

– A bowl or jug

– Cheesecloth or other material suitable for sieving e.g. t-shirt material’, clean pillow case, unbleached coffee filters etc. I use a nutmilk bag which works great.

Note: If you are using this recipe to make traditional Labneh and are not using the whey for fermentation add 1 tsp salt

Method

Step 1. Line a colander with a double layer of cheesecloth, nut milk bag or similar

Step 2. Pour in the yogurt (if making Labneh and you are not using the whey for fermentation stir the teaspoon of salt into the yogurt first) and allow to drip for 8-24 hours. The longer it drips the thicker the cream cheese will be and the more whey you will have. It does not need to be placed in the fridge during this process as the acidity holds bad bacteria at bay (as does the salt if added to make Lebneh), but if you are in a hot tropical environment and leave it for more than 24 hours keep an eye on it. If it does turn mouldy, it should be discarded.

Step 3. Once the yoghurt stops dripping, you will be left with very thick cream-cheese style yogurt and a thin liquid with a greenish tinge, which is the whey. From 1kg of yogurt expect about 500ml of whey.

Step 4. Any leftover whey that is not used, place in a sealed jar and store in the fridge for up to 6 months. The cheese will last a week or two in the fridge or if stored in oil in sterilised jars a couple of months (see below).

How to use the Lebneh cheese

I quite like my Lebnah as is, topped with some herbs, cracked pepper or chilli flakes,  spread on a bagel or spooned into a jacket potato. It’s also yummy in a pitta with mint leaves, olives and sundried tomatoes.

It also makes an amazing dip, drizzled with olive oil, mixed with herbs and pepper and served with pitta and chopped vegetables.

If you want to keep the Labneh longer, drain for 24 hours or longer with a weight on top of it (e.g. heavy jar or tin cans) until it is very thick and you are able to roll it into balls. Place the balls on a tray and chill in the fridge to thicken further. Place the balls in a sterilised jar and cover with olive oil, add herbs if desired. Alternatively, roll the balls in a coating of herbs or cracked pepper and lemon zest before placing in the oil.  The Labneh balls, often known as pickled Labneh, are apparently shelf-safe. Nevertheless, I always store mine in the fridge and eat within two months. The fridge makes the oil turn cloudy, but it becomes clear once the contents of the jar has been out a while. For a different flavour combination store in the oil drained from sun-dried tomatoes.

 

Making Whey and Labneh Cheese from Yoghurt
 
Whey is used in many lacto-fermentation recipes to speed up the fermentation process. It is a great addition to baked goods and smoothies and goes well as a replacement for vinegar in salad dressings. I make a lot of cheese, so I often have whey on hand as a by-product, but for those of you who don’t, here’s a quick and easy way to get your hands on it using shop-bought yoghurt. You can also produce ‘yogurt cheese” using this recipe, which is a lower calorie, healthy alternative to cream cheese.
Author:
Serves: 500g Labneh, 500ml whey
Ingredients
  • 1kg Organic natural live yoghurt
Instructions
  1. Line a colander with a double layer of cheesecloth, nut milk bag or similar
  2. Pour in the yogurt (if making Labneh and you are not using the whey for fermentation stir the teaspoon of salt into the yogurt first) and allow to drip for 8-24 hours. The longer it drips the thicker the cream cheese will be and the more whey you will have. It does not need to be placed in the fridge during this process as the acidity holds bad bacteria at bay (as does the salt if added to make Lebneh), but if you are in a hot tropical environment and leave it for more than 24 hours keep an eye on it. If it does turn mouldy, it should be discarded.
  3. Once the yoghurt stops dripping, you will be left with very thick cream-cheese style yogurt and a thin liquid with a greenish tinge, which is the whey. From 1kg of yogurt expect about 500ml of whey.
  4. Any leftover whey that is not used, place in a sealed jar and store in the fridge for up to 6 months. The cheese will last a week or two in the fridge or if stored in oil in sterilised jars a couple of months

 


 

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