Make Your Own Cheese – Yoghurt Labneh

Apr 23, 2020 | Recipes

For those who missed our April meeting, here is Jenny Trezise’s video on how to make Labneh cheese from yoghurt.

The transcript is below:

Hi, my name is Jenny Trezise and I’ve been asked to do a short video presentation of a cheese-making workshop that I did at Coffs Harbor last December. The course was run by a company called the Cheese Making Workshop and Deli and they offer all sorts of courses. They also sell all the equipment you need for cheese-making and you can purchase the cultures that you need as well.

They also have a huge selection of cheeses from all over the world so if you love cheese and you’re down that way I certainly recommend a visit.

Now the course I did was soft cheese making and it covered Greek Yoghurt, Ricotta, Quark, Mascarpone, Greek and Persian Feta, and Camembert.

I’m going to start with doing the yoghurt because many cheeses are made using this method.

I purchased an EasiYo yoghurt maker at Big W for about $20.00 and this is just to keep the cheese at a constant temperature while it’s sitting on your benchtop.

You can use any type of milk. You can use fresh, you can use UHT, or you can use powdered milk. I’ll choose a powder because it can just sit in the cupboard, it’s also easier because you don’t have to heat up the milk, whereas you do fresh milk.

With the cultures you can either use an existing yoghurt that has live cultures if it and just take a couple of spoonfuls out and put that in your new milk or you can purchase cultures from the cheese-making shop. These give you the different flavors of your yoghurt or types of yoghurt.

Okay, so I’m gonna have to make one litre of milk to make one litre of yogurt so I’m going to add one and a half cups of milk powder and I’m going to add two cups of water – the instructions are on the back of the milk packet.

Give that a stir to get any lumps out and then I’m just going to pour it straight back into this yogurt maker because this holds one litre.

Because I am making the yogurt I’m adding the AB culture. If I was making quark I would add an M starter. I’ll just add one pinch and then I fill it up with water to make the one litre. Just stir and then we just need to put it in the yogurt maker with boiling water.

So this has a little cradle – it sits in here and you just fill the water up until the top of the cradle.

Then, with this one, we’re going to leave it on the bench for up to a minimum of 10 hours and you can leave it up to 24 hours and then after that, it just goes in the fridge to set.

Our yogurt has been in its container for over 10 hours (the minimum) and we’ve then had it in the fridge for four or five hours to set and, just like all good celebrity chefs, I have one that I prepared earlier.

If we just wanted yogurt this is ready to go and eat now or, if we want to turn it into a cheese (or this was one of the cheeses), we’re going to strain it into this cloth and let the whey drain out of it in the fridge.

Put the yogurt in there and then we just need to tie it off. Couple of sticks to hold it up.

Then we’re going to let it drain in this container here. This needs to drain for 24 to 48 hours and it depends on what you’re going to use the cheese for. The firmer the cheese, the longer it needs to drain.

If you want to flavour it with say a wet (like cranberry and port or something) you would want it drier to start with.

It just sits in the fridge until the desired time.

My yoghurt has been draining in the fridge for about 48 hours. I forgot to get it out and show you what it looks like, but anyway I’ll put it in a container. I’ve used half of it but, as you can see, it is quite a lot thicker than it was so if you wanted to turn this into Labneh cheese you could add salt and garlic but, in this case, I’m just going to use it as cream cheese.