This post is a quick, simple DIY for how to make labneh. Homemade labneh is a delicious, extra thick, and tangy strained middle eastern yogurt cheese - perfect to use as a spread, dip, or as a cream cheese alternative.
Place your yogurt into a muslin cloth or within a nut milk bag. Some people also use layers of cheesecloth - but I've found that the nut milk bag is my preferred low-mess option. *
This yogurt then needs to be hung above a deep bowl, to allow the liquid to strain into it. I like to hang mine from a doorknob on a kitchen cabinet. You could also attach it to the kitchen faucet to drain directly into the sink. This depends on if you want to make use of the leftover whey or not.
Leave it be for a few hours, and you'll see the liquid slowly but surely straining. The homemade labneh will get thicker, the longer you leave it so you can test it after a few hours to see what you think. It can also be left to strain overnight and anywhere up to 24 hours.** See the video.
It yields about 3 cups of strained labneh.Store your homemade labneh in an air-tight container in the fridge for up to two weeks. Or form in balls, place in a jar, and cover with olive oil. This way you can keep it for up to 6 months.
For a list of how to use the leftover whey, then read the full blog post.
* You can add a little bit of salt and lemon juice to this mixture. I usually add a pinch of salt and leave any additional ingredients/flavorings to when I'm using the homemade labneh. Lemon juice will assist in the fermenting process and in creating acid whey. However, I find that I like my results without it.
** I once left it for around 46 hours and, at that point, you can physically mold it into shape. It's still perfectly edible this way though.
Note: The total time does not include the Staining Time (4-5hours up to 24hours).