So many folks stumble upon this site when googling “cheesemaking class” or “cheesemaking supplies”. What gets me is that you really don’t need a class to start…and all you really need as far as supplies goes is a cheesecloth. So…I give to you my recipe for Lebanese yogurt and subsequently…yogurt cheese.
1 quart milk, preferably whole milk (you can use goat or sheep here too)
2 tablespoons plain yogurt (this is a starter…if you are lucky…you can get one from your great aunt Mellie who says her starter has been passed around for over 20 years….that must be some good starter!)
Heat milk in a saucepan over medium heat until it begins to rise and bubbles form around the edges; then allow milk to cool to the point at which you can insert your little finger and count to ten (110 degrees F if you don’t trust your my grandmother’s method.)
Pour into an earthenware jar with a tight-fitting lid. Stir in the yogurt until thoroughly mixed; then place in a warm spot away from drafts.
Cover with a wool blanket to keep warm. Or if you have an oven…like most folks do these days…place container in an oven heated to 150 degrees F. After five minutes, turn the heat off, and let the container sit for 6 hours undisturbed; then uncover and remove from oven, and refrigerate until the following day.
Remove about 2 tablespoons of yogurt and place in a small, covered glass jar; then store in refrigerator. This will be your starter (or rawba) for the next yogurt preparation (be nice…and share it with your cousins like we did). Cover the remaining yogurt and keep in refrigerator.
From here you can make yogurt ‘cheese’. Just take some of your fresh yogurt…put it in a big cheese cloth…tie it up and hang it over your sink to drain over night….next day…cheese! We call it labna. You can make it into little balls…put it in a ball jar…cover with olive oil…throw in some spices if you want…and voila…cheese balls!