by Carrie May Jones, CEO (Cooker Extra Ordinaire)

Three (3) eggs (room temperature)

One-half cup of lemon juice (fresh is best)
(Micro-waving for a minute or less produces more juice)

One teaspoon grated lemon rind - using the outside only with as little of the white inner flesh as possible (also referred to as zest) Grate lemon rind before micro-waving and/or juicing lemons

One can of condensed milk

Separate the eggs (MAKE SURE no yolk gets into the whites!). Beat the egg yolks well. Add lemon juice and grated rind. Add milk. Mix well. Pour into a Graham cracker crust.

The next obvious step for a lemon ice box pie would be to make and apply the meringue. However, my boy and I have noticed that the meringue gets hard after several days in the refrigerator and we end up taking it off so we can get to the "goodie" part beneath. Besides, that meringue takes up a lot of valuable space which could be totally occupied by the "goodie" part so we instruct our cook to forget the meringue, double the goodie part (listed above) and bake at 350 degrees F. for 12-15 minutes. If we want something on top, we will use some instant topping such as Cool Whip, Whipped Cream, Dream Whip, etc.

But for those of you who want that better-eat-it-quick-before-it-turns to-concrete meringue topping, here is the recipe:

For the meringue topping:

Three (3) egg whites from the above 3 separated eggs
One tablespoon water
A pinch of salt
One-fourth teaspoon cream of tartar
Five (5) tablespoons of sugar

The three (3) egg whites should be beaten in the large mixer bowl. Add one tablespoon of water and a pinch of salt. Beat on high until foamy and add one-fourth teaspoon cream of tartar. Beat until stiff. Add one tablespoon of sugar at a time (Mix well each addition) until 5 tablespoons have been added. Fold in one teaspoon of vanilla. Cover the top of the pie with meringue. Bake at 350 degrees F. until the top is a golden brown.

This recipe is courtesy of Miss Carrie May Jones of Somerville, Tennessee. She is a good friend of the Parsons' family and is a retired Home Demonstration Agent for the Tennessee Agricultural Extension Service. She graduated from the University of Tennessee in Knoxville in 1940 with a B.S. in Home Management. She taught Home Economics in Friendship, Tennessee for 10-15 years, was Home Demonstration Agent in Dresden (Weakley County), Tennessee, for two years, and then finished her career as a Home Demonstration Agent in Somerville (Fayette County), Tennessee, from October 16, 1964 until March 31, 1985. She began a treasured friendship with the Parsons' family when she baked the refreshments for a bridal shower for Carolyn Tapp who became Mrs. Jerry Parsons on December 18, 1966. She and Jerry Parsons have collaborated on many of the recipes on PLANTanswers and we thank her for her guidance and cooking-recipe translations over the years.