Goat cheese perfection

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La Petite Tomme, a goat cheese from Lazy Lady Farms, from $9-$12 a round at Di Bruno Bros. (all locations except Comcast Center). CRAIG LaBAN/StaffCRAIG LaBAN / Staff

Gooey perfection

There is a fine line between gooey and runny.

"I've battled with it for 15 years," says Laini Fondiller, standing on the picturesque hillside of Lazy Lady Farm, the "off-the-grid" goat cheese farm she's owned for three decades on Vermont's northern edge. "But I've finally perfected it this year."

When it comes to her La Petite Tomme, I agree. This bloomy round, aged for a couple weeks beneath 16-feet of earth in a little cave carved into a wooded hillside, is a dreamy disc of goat cheese that hits that perfect gooey middle. Cut it open, and the pale paste bulges out, elastic with lusciousness. But it doesn't run into a liquid mess, due to intricate subtleties of temperature control and pH. ("I add 10 different cultures to this one!") The only "lazy ladies" at this farm, says Fondiller, preparing to rise at 4 a.m. the next day, are standing in the fields: "the goats."

-Craig LaBan
La Petite Tomme from Lazy Lady Farms, from $9-$12 a round at Di Bruno Bros. (all locations except Comcast Center).

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