Perfect meringues depend on totally yolk-free whites. The seemingly fussy step of separating each egg into a small bowl before combining them guarantees yolk-free whites for bakeshop-quality meringues every time. These crispy little morsels travel well and make great gifts too.
3 large egg whites, at room temperature (see Tip)
1/4 teaspoon cream of tartar
3/4 cup sugar
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract