2 egg whites
1/8 teaspoon salt
1/8 teaspoon cream of tartar
1/2 cup white sugar
1/4 teaspoon vanilla extract
Heat oven to 225°F and line two cookie sheets with aluminum foil.
Beat egg whites, salt, and cream of tartar on medium-high speed until soft peaks form. Slowly add sugar and keep beating until stiff peaks form. (DO NOT underbeat.) If using extract and food coloring, add at the end and beat for another 2 or 3 minutes.
Spoon mixture into a plastic bag and squeeze out most of the air. Cut off one small corner of the bag and pipe cookie-sized dollops of meringue on to cookie sheets, about 1 inch apart.
Bake 60 to 75 minutes, until slightly browned.