Nothing Like a Good Meringue

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By Heather Jeffcoat

Have you ever had one of those déjà vu-like experiences in the kitchen? You are working on a dish, and then you’re hit with a moment from the past? You can almost smell the memory because it’s that vivid.

That happens to me, but the most recent experience was when I was working on a meringue for a dark chocolate pie. I decided to make the Swiss Meringue that was in our March/April 2013 issue. I thought, instead of the rich whipped cream topping that I normally do, I would give this one a go.

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I love meringue any way you do it, especially the yummy classic meringue that my mother-in-law does on her lemon pie, but when I tasted this one at the photo shoot, I was in love. It was almost marshmallow-like in its consistency and flavor. It made me think of my Mom.

She makes this yummy marshmallow frosting to top a white sheet cake. This was (and still is) her go-to frosting recipe to top a quick box cake when she needed a dessert fast for those visitors who dropped in unexpectedly. Growing up she would whip it up in a flash, and I was in awe as she plopped it on each layer. It was beautiful! It glistened and was so fluffy that it reminded me of a cloud. I would always wait patiently to eat what was left on the beaters, and then I would savor a piece of the cake with a big tall glass of milk. My mouth is watering thinking about it!

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My Mom and mother-in-law make preparing meringue look so easy.  But the thing is, meringue can be tricky. It takes patience, practice, and in some cases, the right weather. But I just had to make that Swiss Meringue! So the day I decided to make it for my pie, wouldn’t you know it…rain all day. I pushed on and made it anyway.

I was completely astonished at how lovely it turned out, even while the weather outside was not so pleasant. And when I topped my dark chocolate pie with it and took a bite, well, my knees buckled because it was the perfect combination. Its delicate texture against that rich chocolate reminded me of Easter. I was pretty proud of myself. In the past I’ve made about five different meringues to top pies and banana puddings, but this one is probably my favorite that I’ve made because it reminded me so much of my mom’s ooey-gooey marshmallow meringue frosting.

If you’re up to trying two fantastic meringues or want to see a step-by-step from Paula on how to make a meringue, pick up our March/April 2013 issue or click here.

Heather Martin Jeffcoat recalls an early love of being in the kitchen. It developed from the days of being beside her Grandmother Louise as she cooked for everyone who visited her small-town Alabama home as well as time spent baking with her mother, a Michigan native transplanted to the South after marriage. To this day her mother combines the best of Northern and Southern fare. Heather now spends every spare moment in the kitchen. It’s a way for her to relax and enjoy time with her husband, son, and daughter, who often participate in cooking meals at their home. A love of writing steered Heather into journalism school and then into publishing. After several years working in print and online media, she began freelancing for Cooking With Paula Deen magazine, and she was recently tapped to join the staff full time as the managing editor. She has come to realize that her childhood memories cooking in her grandmother’s and mother’s kitchens, full of love and hospitality, have given her the best education she could have asked for.
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Reader Comments:

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Dear Paula, Always loved U. U are such an inspiration to me and many others.Do not give up!Praying for U!CC

By carra honeycutt on September 16, 2013

54321

So glad to find this miss you

By ladell brradley on August 11, 2013

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Im having trouble making a two crust lemon pie. tryed to make my own pie filling it was trroble so I used can pie filling but its to soft. how can make a good tasting pie . the pie im making is called chocolet lemon. It a two crust lemon with a chocolet frosting. something I had as a Kid growing up in conn. thank you for any help you can give me. love Nancy

By Nancy Madley on March 30, 2013

54321

Paula, I need some help. My daughter is getting married in September and I would like to use a salad dressing recipe of her grandmothers for her favors. I has corn oil, apple cider vineger, romano cheese, sugar, garlic powder, salt and pepper. I thought about having the dry ingredients in a plastic bag but I'm worried about the oil and vineger. Any suggestions? I just want to give as a favor a single serving. Thank you, Donna

By Donna JOhnston on March 23, 2013

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Ms Paula I have tried and tried over the years to do the meringues for my cream pies and banana puddings. But EVERY TIME I do them they will separate from the edges and will have a liquid around it that I pour off. I have put it to the rim of the crust, I have put it over the crust a lil' bit but no matter what I do !!! it will run on me.. Can you tell me please what I am doing wrong.. Thanks so a fan always Diane of Little Rock

By Diane Alford on March 21, 2013

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Hi Joe Weant! Thanks for visiting our web site, here at Paula Deen's we have several coconut inspired recipes that might interest you. You can try Paula's Cut the Calories Coconut Cream Pie Paula’s Laula Luau Coconut Pie , French Coconut Pie or for a healthier pie try Bobby’s Lighter French Coconut Pie. Here at Paula Deen we encourage you to try our dishes!

By Anonymous on March 21, 2013

54321

I wish Paula could tell me how come my merigene is always runny.

By ncampbellbrown@hotmail.com on March 20, 2013

54321

I love your recipes you look good Paula....

By Sharon Sanchez on March 20, 2013

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I am sorry for my comment about the free recipe. I finally found it. I do love Paula and have several books. I am so happy she is healthy now. I do want her to continue he home country cooking with real butter. I love and use her recipes and do not want Bobby's watered down cooking. Thank you and again. I apologize!

By Sandy Spencer on March 20, 2013

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Looks good..my mother always made chocoate pie with meringue...in fact she got blue ribbon.....she also made her pumkin pie deep and with meringue..real good...

By Anonymous on March 20, 2013

54321

need a recipe for coconut cream pie.... Thank you

By Joe Weant on March 20, 2013

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Paula, I love watching you and your family. I miss seeing your show, I watched you everyday. My son lives in Charleston S.C. He took me to the Lady & Sons to eat. Oh my goodness! People are always telling me that I look just like the cooking lady Paula Deen. I always tell them that you are my hero. May God Bless You Mary Ann
Mary Ann Tharp in A Summer of Burgers on August 15, 2014 at 10:48 pm

Add a few spoonfuls of parmesan cheese to the flour and cornmeal breading and it kicks the tomatoes up another notch. Bev
in Crispy Fried Green Tomatoes on August 15, 2014 at 10:33 am

I just bought Paula's Peach Salad Dressing and wondered if anyone has a good recipe that they use it in?
Melissa in Taste Testing 101 on August 13, 2014 at 8:36 am

Congrats Bobby. Loved the family picture miss you Paula on TV will be watching online. Jack is getting big. Looks like his mom but Matt aka moose has your face. Your eyes cheeks hair even falls to his face like yours except to the left. Good luck on your next venture. You give us other 60+ yr women strength to move on. Keep up the good work.
Carol Bryant in Love at Last on August 11, 2014 at 6:12 pm