How to make Labneh.
If you can’t believe we make the best Labneh in Belgium then you can make Labneh yourself by draining yogurt in a cheesecloth for a long time. Very entertaining to do but unfortunately the result can never be as good as our Labneh. The Labneh from the Zuivelarij is made with specific yogurt bacteria and enzymes in the most hygienic conditions at different temperatures. In at home conditions, it’s impossible to imitate these optimal conditions. Anyway, we also made the best ‘how to make labneh’ guide.
But it’s nice to do it. One time. For the best result, follow these tips from the Zuivelarij.
That’s well explained but I would rather just buy my Labneh in the store.
You will need a cheese cloth or in the absence of cheesecloth a thin, clean and frequently rinsed towel with water. Preferably, cook the cloth in water to disinfect it. At least that’s what we do!
You need yogurt. Usually it is recommended to start with a Greek or Turkish yogurt because it is already slightly thicker. In that case, our preference is for Turkish yogurt because it will whey off better. Buy an all natural yogurt as some yogurts may contain ingredients to prevent draining. The choice of the yogurt culture has also caused the yogurt to leak or not. In our Zuivelarij we make Labneh from milk and we opt for a very specific yogurt culture. Choose a yogurt that is draining easily. This may be a low fat yogurt, but of course the result will be much better if you use a full fat yogurt.
Clean your fridge for having enough free space to put the drained yogurt in it later. In principle, you can also drain the yogurt at room temperature, but in that case, the yogurt bacteria will further acidify the Labneh with a stronger, more sour taste and often causing some unpleasant flavours. So clean out that fridge or visit our store page.
Most of the work is done. Place a strainer / colander over a suitable bowl and put the clean cloth in it. Mix the yogurt with 1% salt (1g salt per 100g yogurt). Now scoop the yogurt into the cloth. Fold the cloth shut and let it drain in the fridge for 12 to 24 hours. The longer you let it drain, the drier the Labneh will become. Provided some sense of construction (as in the photo above) you can also hang your Labneh to drain above a pot. If the Labneh is really dry after about 48 hours of draining, you can make balls out of it, and keep them in oil. Labneh Anbaris, as the Lebanese would say
Labneh made at home won’t keep as long as the Labneh from the Zuivelarij. Keep covered in the fridge for a few days. Visit our Labneh ideas page for inspiration and recipes.