Yes, yogurt can be used instead of fresh cream in many dessert recipes, such as cheesecakes, ice cream, mousses and cold souffles. The flavor of the finished dessert will be sharper when made with yogurt rather than cream, but it will be just as satisfying.
Yogurt is also an excellent substitute for sour cream in savory dips, marinades and salad dressings. And in the Middle East it is strained overnight through a sieve lined with muslin to produce a soft yogurt cheese, called labne
. This is served plain, or flavored with herbs such as thyme.
There are many types of yogurt available, ranging from those with a very low fat content to creamy and thick Greek-style yogurts, which can contain up to 7.5 percent butterfat. But even the thickest yogurt contains less fat and kilojoules than fresh cream, so it makes for healthier dishes.