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Spiced Plum Cheese Round


Serves 4

Spiced Plum Cheese Round

  • 2 tablespoons maple syrup
  • 1 tablespoon ginger wine or 1/2 teaspoon freshly grated ginger
  • 1/8 teaspoon cardamom powder
  • 1 teaspoon orange zest
  • Pinch of cayenne pepper
  • 2 plums (I used red plums), stoned and cut into eights
  • 1 teaspoon fresh thyme leaves
  • 1 portion Labneh (recipe below)
  • Thyme sprigs, for garnish
  • Flaked almonds, for garnish

Preheat your oven to 250 deg C. Mix the maple syrup, ginger wine or grated ginger, cardamom powder, orange zest and pinch of cayenne pepper. Toss the plum eights in the maple syrup mix and place in a bowl that just contains the mix so they plums ‘stew’ in the juices while them bake.

Place the plums in the centre of the oven and bake 15 – 20 minutes or until soft.

Remove from the oven and stir in the fresh thyme leaves, then leave to cool.

When the plum mixture is cold, spread the Labneh halfway into the base of a 5-6 cm ring or use a ramekin and top the other half with the spiced plums. Return to the refrigerator till ready to serve.

  • Serve with toasted flaked almonds and thyme sprigs
  • Labneh – Yogurt Cheese
  • 3/4 cup Thick Greek or Turkish yogurt (not Greek-style)
  • Pinch of salt

Stir the yogurt well and season with a pinch of salt. Taste and adjust. You want a hint of the sea and not a gulp. The salt helps draw out the whey (think of cucumbers& aubergines).

Place the yogurt in the centre of a muslin/cheesecloth folded 4 times (or line a sieve with coffee filters). Gather up the ends of the cloth and tie up tight, gently forming a ball. The whey will begin to drip as soon as you begin.

Pass a skewer through the tie/knot and hang over a deep bowl. And refrigerate overnight.

The next morning, much of the whey will have drained out leaving you creamy yogurt cheese. Keep the whey in the fridge and stir into your breakfast cereal, smoothies or back into yogurt or find out a myriad other ways to use it – it is rich in protein. Remember Little Miss Muffet?

Food52 Review: I’m a sucker for tart fruit, creamy cheese and something crispy. So this dish really fit the bill for me. The spicing on the plums was subtle enough t (…more) —The Editors

Author Notes: Ever since I discovered a Middle Eastern homemade yogurt cheese recipe aka Labneh, I’ve made batch after batch. The smooth, creamy hung yogurt, flavour (…more)—Kitchen Butterfly

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