For the Crisp Meringues
- 6 large egg whites
- 1 1/ 2 cups granulated sugar
- pinch cream of tartar
- pinch coarse salt
- 1 1/ 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
To Make the Crisp Meringues
Heat the oven to 200°F.
Combine the egg whites, cream of tartar, salt and sugar in the heatproof bowl of an electric mixer, and set over a pan of simmering water. Whisk constantly until the sugar is completely dissolved, and the mixture is hot to the touch, about 3 minutes. Transfer to a stand mixer fitted with the whisk attachment, and beat until stiff, glossy peaks form, 5 to 7 minutes. Mix in the vanilla.
Line 2 baking sheets with parchment or baking mat. Dollop the meringue into 12 equal piles, and make a little depression with the back of a soup spoon in each one.
Bake the meringues for 2 hours. Turn off oven and leave until cool. (it’s best to make these the day before or morning of the day you want to serve them.)
For the Lemon Curd
- 1/ 2 cup lemon juice
- 6 egg yolks
- 1 cup sugar
- 4 teaspoons freshly grated lemon zest
- 1 stick (1/2 cup) unsalted butter, cold, cut into cubes
To Make the Lemon Curd
Combine the lemon juice, egg yolks, and sugar in a non-reactive bowl. Whisk until smooth. Transfer the mixture to a heavy non-reactive saucepan and cook over medium heat, stirring constantly with a wooden spoon, until hot, 5 to 10 minutes. The mixture should begin to thicken as the temperature increases. Once thick (it should coat the back of the spoon), reduce the heat and cook for an additional 5 to 10 minutes, stirring continuously.
Remove the saucepan from the heat and strain over a bowl. Stir in the lemon zest and butter until the butter has completely melted. Cool slightly before using. Curd can be stored in the refrigerator in an airtight container up to 1 week. Warm over a double boiler or microwave briefly to return it to liquid form. It will set up again when chilled.