Fresh Ricotta

This is actually Farmers' Cheese, as true ricotta is the by-product of mozzarella production. However, this recipe provides a great cheese for all your cooking requirements, is easy to make, and you control the ingredients. Reserve the whey water and use it to make bread or soup.
Yield 1.5 pounds

1/4 cup water
2 quarts whole milk
1 cup heavy cream
1/2 teaspoon salt
3 tablespoons distilled white vinegar

Special Equipment: sieve or fine colander lined with 3 layers of cheesecloth

1 In a 6 quart, heavy-bottomed pot over medium heat, add water. Let it get just warm, then slowly pour in milk and cream. Add salt.
2 Heat until milk begins to boil, about 15 minutes or so. Stir occasionally to prevent scorching. Watch the pot - as the milk starts to boil, it will quickly rise and can boil over in the blink of an eye!
3 While milk is heating, line colander or sieve with cheesecloth and place over 4 quart bowl or pot.
4 When milk boils, turn heat to simmer, stir in vinegar, and continue to cook for 2-5 minutes, stirring gently, pushing curds to center.
5 When curdled, remove from heat and slowly pour through cheesecloth. Let stand 1 hour.
6 Scoop ricotta from colander and use immediately or refrigerate. Water can be used in other recipes or discarded.

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