Text and photography by Veronica Yudkevich
One of the perks of living in the Galilee, in an area abundant with olive groves is getting your hands on the most fresh, fragrant, amazing olive oil, that is if you have an olive mill in the neighborhood, and/or you’re obsessed with quality local food, like I am. I’ll even set my shyness aside for a chance of getting a bottle of this green gold straight from the “oven”. The first thing I’ll do then is dive into a plate of olive oil with a chunk of fresh bread or pita. Yum!
Dipping a warm pita in olive oil is great, but dipping it in homemade labneh with that oil is even better. Labneh is so easy to make by straining a yogurt of your choice (at least 1 litre) through a cotton cloth spread over a colander. This process helps to drain the liquids leaving a silky, creamy cheese. Although it means planning ahead, but in a day or two, depending on how dry you prefer the consistency of the labneh to be, you’ll be rewarded by a cheese so much better than any of the supermarket versions. Add some salt, zaatar or sumac, a splash of your favorite olive oil and grab a pita bread. Done.