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Labne is one of the most delicious appetizers out there, however if you’re into trying an upgraded version of this dish, you should go for Turkish labne! It’s super creamy, smooth, and can be prepared in no time!
Loaded with different vegetables, drizzled with olive oil and garnished with sweet pomegranate, turkish labne makes a great dip and a perfect mezze spread!
Above all, it’s a healthy dish that can be served for breakfast, lunch, and dinner, or even as a snack to enjoyed on family gatherings. You simply cannot miss on this recipe!
Don’t Forget To Pair With Zaatar Pitas!
Labne makes up a huge part of my childhood. As it was my mom’s favorite snack, I always had to carry around the “almighty sandwich” -as my mom used to call it- to school. A sandwich that had labne and a bunch of other vegetables like tomatoes, cucumbers, some olives, and of course, a green element.
This is why I present to you today a richer version of the known labne, a recreation that combines different vegetables along with a special touch to level things up.
In addition to being a quick and easy dish to make, Turkish labne is also light and can easily be turned into gluten-free! It is my go to snack whenever I feel like I need a boost of flavors. I recommend you give it a try!
Why Your Diet Needs Turkish Labne
The thick and creamy soft cheese, AKA labne, offers a hearty dose of protein for a low number of calories. Plus, it’s a good source of probiotics which strengthen your gut heath.
For bell peppers, what you don’t know about them is that they’re rich in many vitamins and antioxidants, some of which may be beneficial for preventing certain chronic conditions, such as heart disease and cancer.
Besides having labne as its main ingredient alongside a variety of veggies, this recipe also incorporates bulgur wheat which is an incredibly versatile and a low calorie whole grain. Whole grains can help control blood sugar and might support a moderate weight and optimal health.
Ways To Eat Turkish Labne
We all love labne, let’s start here. It’s an incredibly versatile yogurt cheese that can be served as a dip for sliced veggies, warm pita, or as a spread for toasted bagels or sliced flatbread.
One way of eating Turkish labne is with crispy za’atar pita, which is basically pita bread topped with a mix of toasted dried thyme leaves, sesame seeds, salt, and sumac spice, all drenched in olive oil.
For that you first need to cut the pita chips into wedges, and you can separate the layers for thinner chips. Then, lay the chips into a baking pan and brush them with the zaatar and olive oil mix.
For easier brushing, I suggest you let the mix be bit runny by adding an extra one or two tablespoons of oil. Finally, bake at 350°F for about 7 minutes, dip with the Turkish labne and enjoy!
Baked Labne Bread
Similar to garlic bread, labne bread is simply prepared by spreading Turkish labne onto sliced loaf crusty bread. This time, I recommend you drop on the bulgur, owing to the presence of a source of carbs.
After that, and if you like your labne bread to be toasty, place the baking pan while open-faced in the oven after you preheat it to 350°F. However for the bread to stay soft, wrap it foil then bake. This will keep the bread from getting extra crispy while allowing each slice to absorb the labne mix.
A Fun Twist On Labne
The light texture and slightly tart taste of labne makes it a perfect match to a variety of herbs and spices. For instance, you could use plain labne to create another dip with zaatar pistachio olive mint topping.
As exotic as it might sound, this variation requires you to combine, in a separate bowl, some chopped mint leaves, olives, salt, zaatar olive oil mix, and crushed pistachios.
Then, scoop out some labne into a bowl then top it with few tablespoons of the mix. Sprinkle with pomegranate, serve with zaatar pitas or warm bagels, and enjoy!
The Perfect On The Go Snack
1st Tip: Refrigerate turkish labne overnight until the bulgur grains absorb the labne and become tender.
2nd Tip: Use salted crackers to dip in the Turkish labne if you’re not in the mood for baking your own chips.
3rd Tip: Sprinkle some of the zaatar mix (without olive oil) over the labne for an extra kick of flavor.
4th Tip: If you’re a fan of spice, add some chili powder into the labne or finely chop some Jalapeño Pepper.
Frequently Asked Questions
Labne is Middle Eastern soft cheese produced by straining yogurt to remove excess whey to form a thicker product.
You can use quinoa, one of the most popular and healthiest gluten-free grains. You could also go for oats, it’ll make the labne even creamier.
When refrigerated, turkish labne lasts up to 4 days.
Ingredients For Turkish Labne
- labne kefir cheese
- bulgur – number 1
- dried mint
- garlic cove
- medium cucumber
- red pepper
- green pepper
- yellow pepper
- black olives
- green olives
How To Make Turkish Labne
First, in a bowl, add the chopped cucumbers, peppers, radish, olives, mint, bulgur and crushed garlic, then mix well.
Next, fold in the labne until the ingredients are well mixed. Finally garnish with walnuts, pomegranate seeds, and a drizzle of olive oil. Enjoy with fresh pita bread, on top of zaatar pitas, or in a sandwich.
A Common Dish Done Uncommonly Well!
Recipes You Must Try:
- Homemade Tzatziki Sauce (Greek Yogurt and Cucumber)
- Kale Salad With Caramelized Onions
- Labne Spinach Pies- Fatayer
- Greek Salad On Naan Bread
- Rotini Crab Stuffed Portabella Mushrooms
- Loaded Labne Toast
- French Onion Spinach Artichoke Dip
- Easy Fresh Guacamole Recipe
- Roasted Chickpea Avocado Salad
- Smooth Vegan Hummus Recipe
- 2 cups (16 oz) Labne Kefir Cheese
- 1 tbsp bulgur, number 1
- 2 tbsp dried mint
- 1 garlic clove, crushed
- 1 medium cucumber, finely chopped
- ½ green pepper, finely chopped
- ½ red pepper, finely chopped
- ½ yellow pepper, finely chopped
- ¼ cup black olives, chopped
- ¼ cup green olives, chopped
- 3 radish, finely chopped
- In a bowl add the chopped cucumbers, peppers, radish, olives, mint, bulgur and crushed garlic, then mix well.
- Fold in the labne until the ingredients are well mixed. Serve with fresh pita bread, on top of zaatar pitas, or in a sandwich.
- Garnish with crushed walnuts, pomegranate arils, and a drizzle of olive oil then enjoy!
- Refrigerate turkish labne overnight until the bulgur grains absorb the labne and become tender.
- Use salted crackers to dip in the turkish labne if you’re not in the mood for baking your own chips.
- Sprinkle some of the zaatar mix (without olive oil) over the labne for an extra kick of flavor.
- If you’re a fan of spice, add some chili powder into the labne or finely chop some Jalapeño Pepper.