Makes 8 or more servings
Time overnight, largely unattended
This might be a new, unexpected way to use yogurt, yet it's probably as old as yogurt itself. It's the easiest cheese you can possibly make, since it needs no special equipment or curdling agents—basically, it's yogurt with the excess liquid removed.
There is, however, a key here: you must start with good whole-milk yogurt. Thick, locally made Greek or Turkish yogurt is the ideal (well, the ideal is yogurt you make yourself), but any high-quality yogurt will produce a nice cheese.
Serve with crackers, chips, and/or raw vegetables.
1 pound plain yogurt
Salt to taste
1 tablespoon paprika
1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
1. Line a strainer with a sheet of cheesecloth; hang over a mixing bowl so the bottom of the strainer clears the bowl by at least an inch. Dump the yogurt into the center of the cheesecloth. Allow the whey to strain out of the yogurt at least overnight or up to 24 hours; this should happen in a cool place—the refrigerator is fine.
2. After this initial straining, squeeze out any remaining whey by pulling tightly on the ends of the cheesecloth. Store in the refrigerator in an airtight container until you are ready to use (it will keep for several days). Before serving, add salt, then garnish with paprika and olive oil to serve.
The Best Recipes in the World
by Mark Bittman
Hardcover, 768 pages, $29.95
Recipe reprinted by permission.
This page created December 2005
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