Homemade Labneh with Sumac, Pomegranate and Basil

Strain Greek yoghurt, which is already strained, even more and you get labneh (laben in Somali), a popular Middle Eastern and North African breakfast dish. It is a great alternative to cream cheese and spreads easily on bread.

Get as inventive as you want with labneh. Sometimes I sprinkle ground nuts and spices over it or honey. Another popular use of labneh is to mix it with herbs and shape it into balls, which are then stored in olive oil. This can be eaten as a cheese.

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Homemade Labneh with Sumac, Pomegranate and Basil

Recipe by:
Adapted from a recipe by Paul Merrett


450g Greek yoghurt
½ teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon sumac
1 pomegranate
A few basil leaves
1 tablespoon olive oil
A large piece of muslin cloth


1. Place the muslin cloth inside a large bowl. Pour the yoghurt into the cloth, wrap tightly and suspend the wrapped yoghurt over the bowl for 24 hours. This will allow the liquid to drain from the yoghurt, leaving thick, creamy labneh.
2. Cut the pomegranate in half and remove the seeds by hitting the bottom of the fruit with a wooden spoon.
3. Mix the labneh with salt and spread over a large plate. Drizzle with olive oil. Sprinkle the sumac, pomegranate seeds and basil leaves.
4. Serve with bread.

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Serves: 4 - 6 people

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