An Easy, Summertime Labneh Recipe from Chef John Minas

In 2011, Doug and I were introduced to Chef John Minas by way of Taniel Koushakjian, founder and editor-in-chief of the Florida Armenians group. At the time, Chef Minas was newly selected as the Executive Chef for Governor Rick Scott and his First Lady at the Governor’s Mansion, Tallahassee, FL.

Quite an achievement for such a young chef!

Chef John Mikhail Minas

Click here to read Doug’s original story about Chef Minas’ background and early days as an Executive Chef.

When the article was written, Chef Minas was just getting started. He’d planned to stay in Tallahassee for a long time, which he did. When asked what his future plans were, he stated, “… who knows?”

Since his departure from the Governor’s Mansion, Chef Minas became the Executive Chef/ Managing Partner at the Edison Restaurant (Tallahassee), and is now the Founder/Executive Chef at Minas Hospitality.

Who could ask for more?

We wish Chef Minas the very best!!

The following recipe and photo are from Chef Minas’ Blog, and are printed here with his permission.


Chef John Minas’ Labneh

Course Side Dish


  • 2 quarts Greek yogurt whole milk
  • 2 tsp Kosher salt


  • Mix ingredients together thoroughly.
  • Place four large layers of cheesecloth over a colander (leave plenty of overhang).
  • Pour yogurt mixture into center of cheesecloth. 
  • Lift sides of overhanging cheesecloth to form a pouch (some water will leak out from the yogurt and that is expected).
  • Twist the pouch until the yogurt forms a tight ball and tie into a knot.
  • Hang in refrigerator for 3 days with a bowl underneath to catch excess water.
  • After 3 days, remove yogurt from cheesecloth and store into a container with a tight lid.


Serve with Aleppo pepper, dried mint, olive oil and fresh pita.

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