In my fridge I had some lemon juice, egg whites, and 2 pie crusts that needed to be used before they went bad. I plan to use one of the pie crusts for a quiche, but since the other ingredients were screaming for use as well, I pulled out my Granny's recipes and tried my hand at a lemon meringue pie (aka, lemon ice box pie). The pie itself turned out well. And I was quite surprised that my meringue was fluffy and spread beautifully into high peaks. I did have to call my mother-in-law to find out how long to cook the meringue. Granny's recipe didn't have that on it (I guess that's something all good cooks should know), and I couldn't remember if it was broil on high or bake at 350. For some reason it seems most foods are cooked on one of those two numbers. So I'm pleased, as well as enjoying the thought of surprising my husband who happens to like meringue. Imagine my disappointment when I pulled the pie out of the oven and the meringue is flat with the tiniest of little brown peaks.
If my Granny Rea were still alive and standing beside me and that pie today, her right hand would be on her hip, her eyebrows would be raised, her mouth in a frown, and she'd humph and say "Somebody needs more practice."
Meringue is not only on my list of foods I dislike, it's also on my list of foods I find difficult to prepare. And I'm typing that with my held head even. That's just one of those things I don't think this southern girl will ever muster.