Spinach Roti and Za'atar Labneh. I have met a lot of lovely people on social media. Many of them are really talented cooks and bakers, specializing in foods I am not very familiar with. Archana from @foodyfables is one of those. Her feed is awesome and food inspiring. If she had a website, I would link this to her, but she doesn't. So, if you have Instagram, check her out. She posted about a spinach roti and I was so intrigued, I had to give it a try. It is a super easy flatbread that is common in Indian cooking. That is where the idea for this Spinach Roti with Labneh Za'atar came from.
Making The Labneh
Because the labneh takes some time to make, I will start with that. Use a whole or partial fat plain yogurt. I grabbed a Greek yogurt for this, but it is not my preference. I actually like regular yogurt instead. The Greek yogurt makes the labneh so thick and not as creamy as I like. But...it is what I had, so I used it.
Add the salt and mix. This will help separate out the whey.
Mix well to incorporate.
You can tie this up and hang it over the sink, or over a bowl as I did. It gets a little heavy, so make sure and tie it twice.
It takes 6-24 hours to drain. I just threw mine in the fridge overnight.
Making The Spinach Roti
Next, let's start the roti. Throw the spinach into a food processor or blender. This is the food processor I have loved and used for so long.
Pulse until it is all chopped very fine.
You know I love using wheat flour in anything I can, and this was no exception! After a little deliberation about which to use, I went with a kamut flour.
Archana mixes her roti by hand, but I am lazy and threw it in my Bosch.
Add all ingredients and mix for several minutes until it is smooth. Cover and let it rest for about 30 minutes. This is important with any dough you have mixed with flour in it. If the dough hasn't had the chance to "rest" it will try and constantly pull back in on you. When it is well-rested it is relaxed and easy to roll.
Divide dough into 10 portions. Isn't it such a beautiful color?
I love to use my bench knife when working with dough. It is the best! I should have videoed me rolling the dough, so you could get an idea. Roll it into circles, then roll with the rolling pin.
Cooking The Spinach Roti
Roll thin like a tortilla. I sprinkled the countertop with a little flour. You don't want to use a ton, but enough to keep the roti from sticking. Archana says to dip each piece in flour, then roll. I sprinkled instead, as it is how I roll any dough I am using.
You can use any pan you prefer, which for me would have normally been my cast iron. My nonstick was already on the cooktop though, so I used it. Heat it well. I greased mine with just a touch of canola oil. Cook for a minute or on each side. Archana recommends cooking it over an open flame after this for the char. I think it is beautiful this way and recommend doing the same. If you don't want to, just brown in the pan.
Here is what mine looks like after a little time on the flame. The next day when I made them again, yes they were that good, I charred a little longer. They were beautiful.
Putting Together The Spinach Roti and Za'atar Labneh
Let's put it all together! Pull out your labneh.
This one was really thick as I used a Greek Yogurt, which is why I like regular yogurt.
Scoop it on to your platter, or plate you are serving it on.
If you can tell from the photo, the consistency is not perfectly smooth, but still really good anyway! I just noticed how wrinkly my shirt is. Good grief, was I sleeping in my clothes??
Drizzle with olive oil and sprinkle with Za'atar. I also like mine salty, so I sprinkled with some good quality sea salt. There are plenty of recipes online for za'atar, but it is pretty easily accessible to buy as well, which is what I chose.
Finishing The Mezze Platter With Spinach Roti and Za'atar Labneh
I made a mezze platter of sorts with it. In our house, no mezze platter is complete without cucumbers. I love to cut the cucumbers in ribbons. You can do this easily on a mandoline or with a vegetable peeler as I showed here.
Use whatever vegetables you like.
The best comment of the evening was when one of my boys said, "this doesn't even taste like spinach"! That says a lot coming from them!
So, looking for a healthy snacking option? Definitely check out this Spinach Roti with Za'atar Labneh.
- 32 ounces plain whole milk yogurt
- 1- 1 ½ teaspoons salt
- Mix the salt with yogurt. Pour yogurt into double layers of cheesecloth. Tie the cheesecloth onto a wooden spoon hanging over a bowl- as shown in the photos. Place into fridge. Let it sit at least 24 hours. The whey will strain out. Mine took about 30 hours. From here you can eat the cheese as is. Or you can marinate it, as shown in photo. Simply fill a jar with good quality olive oil, minced garlic and herbs of choice. I used salt, pepper, basil, oregano and thyme. Drop the labneh into the olive oil mixture with a portion scoop. Let this marinate in the fridge for several days at least. I love to eat the marinated cheese spread over toast or rice cakes!I also use it spread on pitas as a base.Or you can mix in minced garlic, salt and pepper. Top with olive oil and herbs of choice- It makes a pretty presentation when the herbs and olive oil are sprinkled on top. Use it on a mezze platter with veggies, crackers pita chips etc. Your friends will be so impressed with your "cheese" making skills. So, sit back and enjoy the praise!
- 2 cups whole wheat flour plus more for rolling. Also, I use a kamut wheat flour for mine. It was amazing.
- ¾-1 cup spinach puree I made mine in the food processor and it took about 6 cups to make a little under a cup.
- 1 clove garlic
- 1 teaspoon salt
- ½ teaspoon carom seeds I didn't have these, so I used ground cumin,
- 2 teaspoons oil I used olive oil
- ½ cup water Archana suggested ¼ cup water. Both times I made it I needed more water. So, be mindful, this will be a variable.
- Pulse garlic with spinach in blender or food processor to get a puree. Now, at this point, you can either knead by hand or by stand mixer, which is what I did. Add all ingredients to the mixer and mix on medium speed for about 3-4 minutes. If you are kneading by hand, Archana gives instructions like this:Add spinach puree to flour, add carom seeds (or cumin), salt and mix. Slowly add water and start mixing and kneading dough. You may need more or less depending on water content of spinach puree. Knead to a soft dough, then add oil and knead again. Regardless of mixing method, allow the dough to rest for 30- 45 minutes. Divide dough into 10 pieces. Dip each piece in flour and roll in a round, thin piece, like a tortilla. Place on an oiled, heated hot skillet. Once you see bubbles form, flip to the other side. It should take about 30 seconds per side. Next, move to an open flame and make it puff. Brush with melted butter or ghee. Serve it hot!