Lemon Meringue Muffins

 Lemon Meringue Pie holds a special place in my heart.  It happens to be my family's classic go-to dessert, one that everyone loved, especially my Grandpa.  My Grandpa loved Lemon Meringue Pie with a passion. Each time he took a bite, he'd rear his head back and close his eyes, savoring every bite. He'd always chuckle, as if the Lemon Meringue Pie was so good that he couldn't help but be amused by how much he loved it.  His chuckle was contagious and before long my parents and I would be laughing right along with him.  Sometimes we'd laugh our way through the whole pie, just the four of us.
Every time I see anything resembling Lemon Meringue Pie I am reminded of my Grandpa and all the fun times we had as a family gathering at the table. Ironically, I stumbled across this recipe for Lemon Meringue Muffins the day before what would have been my Grandpa's birthday.  It seemed fitting to make these on his special day and I'm so glad I did.  Lemon Meringue MuffinsAdapted from Taste of HomeMakes 12
6 tablespoons butter, softened1 cup sugar, divided 2 eggs1/2 cup plain yogurt (I used greek yogurt)2 tablespoons lemon juice1 tablespoon grated lemon peel1/4 teaspoon lemon extract1-1/3 cup all purpose flour1/2 teaspoon baking powder1/2 teaspoon baking soda2 egg whites
In a large bowl, cream butter and 2/3 cup sugar until light and fluffy. Add eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition. Beat in the yogurt, lemon juice, peel and extract. Combine the flour, baking powder and baking soda; add to creamed mixture just until moistened.
Fill greased or paper-lined muffin cups three-fourths full. Bake at 350° for 18 minutes. Meanwhile, in a small bowl, beat egg whites on medium speed until soft peaks form. Gradually beat in remaining sugar, 1 tablespoon at a time, on high until stiff glossy peaks form and sugar is dissolved.
Transfer meringue to a heavy-duty resealable plastic bag; cut a small hole in a corner of bag. Pipe onto muffins. Bake 5-8 minutes longer or until meringue is golden brown and a toothpick inserted into the muffin comes out clean. Cool for 5 minutes before removing from pan to a wire rack. Serve warm. Refrigerate leftovers.
Nutrition Facts: 1 muffin equals 188 calories, 7 g fat (4 g saturated fat), 52 mg cholesterol, 135 mg sodium, 28 g carbohydrate, trace fiber, 4 g protein.

 Notes/Results:  This is one exciting muffin!  The muffin itself is light and lemony with a very tender crumb.  The meringue topping is billowy and fluffy and makes these muffins a very special treat.  The entire family loved these muffins, but I do think a little layer of lemon curd between the muffin and the meringue would be especially nice.  As far as muffins go, these are pretty light and not so bad for you, making them a pretty good choice in the muffin department.  Eating pie with Gramps