While growing up, I was the one girl in the neighborhood whose mother had taught her to bake. While cleaning out my childhood home, I found my mother's recipe box. This is one of the recipes that was inside:

Chocolate Chip Meringue Squares

Makes 4 dozen or more

1/2 cup brown sugar

3/4 cup shortening or butter, room temperature

1 teaspoon vanilla

3 egg yolks beaten with 1 tablespoon water

2 cups sifted flour

1 teaspoon baking powder

1/4 teaspoon baking soda

3/4 teaspoon salt

12 ounce package semisweet chocolate chips

Meringue topping:

3 egg whites

1 cup brown sugar

1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

2. Using a mixer or by hand, cream sugar and shortening. Mix in vanilla and egg yolks.

3. Combine the flour, baking powder, baking soda and salt; fold into the egg mixture.

4. Spread the mixture into the bottom of a 9-by-13-inch pan. Top with chocolate chips, gently pressing them into the mixture.

5. Beat egg whites until stiff. Add 1 cup brown sugar, stirring well. Spread over chocolate layer.

6. Bake for about 30 minutes or until a knife inserted in the center comes out almost clean, and the top is browned. While still warm, cut into 1 to 11/2-inch squares.

-- Adapted from a recipe from Deb Petersen's family