Home Made Labneh & Sunday Brunch, Sans Kids!

This Sunday morning started like most: with a pair of big brown eyes staring insistently at me to awake & to bargain:

“5 more minutes & I’ll make you breakfast”

You may already know this, but negotiating additional sleep-time with hungry children will require the experienced parent to pull the right bribing bargaining technique. Our family is no exception, and I found that pancakes are always a fair compromise as they take a few minutes to whip-up and make everybody happy topped with creamy peanut butter, melted chocolate, or maple syrup, whipped cream & fresh fruits. Feel free to use This recipe  as it is not sweet so if you are more of a savory tooth in the morning you can also top them with this home-made Labneh recipe and a generous sprinkle of Za’atar!


Home made Labneh in Olive Oil.


  • 1 kg full fat Greek or Turkish yogurt
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • Optional
    • to conserve: olive oil,
    • to flavor: fresh herbs, crushed garlic, chopped olives, Za’atar…


  1. Place a colander over a deep bowl and line it with a clean cotton fabric. Unbleached coffee filters can work too.
  2. Mix in the salt into the yogurt then add the yogurt to the cloth.
  3. Cover well and place a weight on top to allow the liquid to drain (a can or a stone is enough)
  4. Leave in the fridge overnight to drain the whey and for the labne to thicken
  5. Discard the liquid (or keep in the fridge to add to pasta sauce, pancake batter…) and mix in the herbs, or other ingredients.

You can keep the Labneh in the fridge in an airtight container for about a week. Alternatively, you can shape it into small balls & drop them into a jar filled with good quality olive oil. Add fresh rosemary, thyme, peppercorn or other herbs and keep in the fridge for several weeks. Note, I keep “fresh” herbs all year long in freezing bags for just his kind of occasion.

No cooking for us today though! Thanks to a surprise invitation from the kids’ grandfather to land the boat for the winter, we had the rest of the day to ourselves! If, like us, you ever find yourselves looking for a place to enjoy on an unexpectedly calm Sunday – here are a some tested & loved adresses by Expats parents in Helsinki.

  1. Sandro: where we spent this glorious Sunday, eating Moroccan delicacies in the edgy Kallio neighborhood ! Their Ginger Shot & sweet roasted pepper dip are a must try!
  2. Block of Dylan: located in Eteläesplanadi in the center of Helsinki, they serve all day long; They have themed brunch so be sure to check their website.
  3. SouthPark: is in the heart of the city, and focuses on the healthy side of brunch- ”super seed” muesli DIY, seasonal produce salad bar…

Most of these places will require you to book in advance, but we tried our luck and got a table for 2 at Sandro as soon as we arrived! So be wild, try your luck & enjoy! Helsinki food scene has never been so exciting as this past few years and frankly I can’t wait to see what’s next on the menu!

How about you, what are your favorite places to eat  in Helsinki? Give them a shout in the comment section below or tag us @hungryinhelsinki on their Instagram page so we can go check them out as well!

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