A light and breezy dessert for Mother’s Day. Karen Schneider / For The Forecaster

Karen Schneider cooks and writes in the village of Cundy’s Harbor. You can reach her at iwrite33@comcast.net or 504-0545.

My mother was a force – everyone said so. The deliciousness she provided to our family and to everyone who crossed our threshold was epic.

I’ve given Mom a mention in this column numerous times and because Mother’s Day weekend is here, and because I’m feeling particularly nostalgic, I include two of her recipes.

Mom made this bread thousands of times and was still making it at age 87. I went on to make four loaves of this soft, pleasantly sweet bread every week for my own children’s sandwiches, and for Saturday night pizza. Also, it’s just right in its toasted form, making a golden platform for a generous spread of butter, jam, peanut butter, or all three all at once.

Mom was also an absolute pro at whipping up perfect meringue, whether it be to top a luscious lemon pie (my favorite), or to dazzle us with these petite meringues that she filled with puddings, berries or simply drizzled with melted chocolate.

Oh, that woman had so many party tricks up her sleeve, and one of these was storing an ample supply of these light, airy shells in the big Sears upright freezer, along with the bread, homemade cookies and cupcakes, ready-made canapes and so much more.

For 50 years, I have followed in her footsteps, loving my role of being a home cook. I took to it naturally and still find much joy and gratification in it. Writing this column sprung from that passion.


As we bid farewell to the Coastal Journal, I assure you that “Cooking at the Cove” will go on, popping into the Times Record. I’ve so enjoyed my connections with you, your families and your kitchens. Let’s keep it going – meet me in the pages of the Times Record next week!

Country crust bread

2 (1/4 ounce each) envelopes or 4½ teaspoons active dry yeast

2 cups warm water (105-115 degrees)

1/2 cup granulated sugar

1 tablespoon salt

2 eggs


1/4 cup canola oil, plus more for preparing loaves

6-6½ cups flour

Softened butter for loaf tops

Dissolve yeast in warm water. Stir in sugar, salt, eggs and oil, then add 2 cups flour. Beat with electric mixer until smooth. Mix in remaining flour one cup at a time until the dough is easy to handle.

Turn dough onto lightly floured surface. Knead until smooth and elastic for 8-10 minutes. Place dough in a large, oiled bowl, then flip dough so the oiled side is up. Cover with a clean towel and allow to rise in a warm place until doubled, about an hour. The dough is ready if an impression remains.

Punch dough down and divide in half. Roll each into a rectangle approximately 18-by-9 inches. Roll up, beginning at the short side. Seal the ends, then fold them under to form a loaf. Place seam-side down in two 9-by-5-by-3 buttered glass loaf pans. Brush loaves with a bit of oil. Cover with the towel and allow to rise until doubled, about an hour.


Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Place loaves on lower oven rack so tops of the loaves are at the center of the oven. Bake 30-35 minutes or until the loaves are a deep golden brown and sound hollow when tapped. Remove from pans and brush with butter. With utmost willpower, allow the bread to cool before slicing.

Yield: 2 loaves

Citrus meringues

6 large egg whites, at room temperature

1/8 teaspoon cream of tartar

Pinch of salt

1½ cups granulated sugar


1 teaspoon fresh lemon juice

1/2 teaspoon vanilla

2½ teaspoons cornstarch

2½ cups homemade or jarred lemon curd

Citrus slices for garnish

Preheat oven to 250 degrees. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper. Beat egg whites, cream of tartar and a pinch of salt on medium speed in a large bowl with an electric mixer until soft peaks form. Add sugar 1 tablespoon at a time, beating on high speed until stiff peaks form, 20 minutes, scraping sides of bowl. Beat in lemon juice and vanilla. Gently fold in cornstarch.

Spread meringue in 8 mounds on lined baking sheet, using the back of a spoon to create an indent in each to form a shell. Bake for one hour. Turn off the oven and leave the meringues in the oven to dry for another hour, then set on cooling racks.

When completely cooled, fill with dollops of lemon curd. Garnish with citrus slices.

Yield: 8 servings

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