Show Me the Whey pt. 1

(Please also see Show Me the Whey part 2)

I use whey for all sort of things here and am often asked both how to make it and what to do with the leftover solids.  Here’s a really easy demo..

You’ll need a strainer, clean cloth, bowl or jar and a tub of plain yoghurt.  Be sure to use plain, cultured whole milk yoghurt without gelatin.

Line the strainer with the cloth, pour in the yoghurt and fold the towel over to keep it clean.  Let it sit on the counter overnight.  That’s it!

In the morning, you will have collected approximately 12 ounces of clear, greenish looking whey.  Pour the whey into a jar, cover tightly and refrigerate.  It will keep up to 6 months.

The leftover solids (roughly 18 ounces) are variously referred to as strained yoghurt, yoghurt cheese, labneh or dahi.  By any name, it is similar in taste and texture to cream cheese, which is how I typically use it.

It’s great plain, with fruit, or with herbs and spices.  I’ve added Lebanese Za’atar (sumac berries, toasted sesame and sea salt) to half, and fresh oregano, basil and garlic to the other half.  The cheese will keep up to 1 month in the fridge.

16 thoughts on “Show Me the Whey pt. 1

  1. Whey is the left over portion after clotting and removing the solid portion. Though whey is allowed to be wasted in the drainage in majority of the dairy industries, it is rich in nutrients like lactose, whey proteins and certain vitamins. It is high time that you found out ingenious way of using it. Congrats :)

  2. I just thought I’d let you know that za’tar means “thyme” in Arabic, and I assure you, thyme is a delicious addition to labneh! :)

  3. Oh my goodness, you are a dangerous man. :D I’ve NEVER been a yogurt fan, but I love cream cheese, so I decided to give this a shot. I dutifully stood in the refrigerated aisle studying all the yogurt containers (Dannon organic was supposed to be on sale, but alas, was out of stock). I got some Stoneyfield Farms (with cream on top, as the label exuberantly proclaimed) for $4.00. Got my cheesecloth and figured I could wing the rest. So…I’m using a colander rather than a regular strainer. Should still work. Anyway, as I was opening the yogurt, I got some of the yogurt/cream on my finger, so I liked it off. Oh my word. I almost gave up on the cheese and devoured the yogurt right there. Clearly, I’ve been offered the wrong kind of yogurt time and again. I thought it would be a lot more sour than it was, but it was rich, creamy goodness, right there in front of me. Can’t wait to see how great the cheese is! And whether using the whey to soak my oatmeal is any better than lemon juice… All that, plus, it’s a bargain! I can now have gobs of organic cream cheese, plus whey, for about the same amount as I pay for 8-12 ounces of Philly.

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