Heat oven to 350F. Grease and flour two 8 or 9 inch round cake pans. In large bowl, combine all cake ingredients at low speed until moistened; beat 2 minutes at highest speed. Pour batter into prepared pan. Bake at 350F for 25 to 35 minutes or until cake springs back when touched lightly in center. Cool 15 minutes; remove from pans. Cool completely.
Meanwhile, in medium-size heavy saucepan combine 1 cup sugar, cornstarch and salt. Gradually stir in water, lemon juice, margarine and lemon peel. Cook over medium heat until mixture boils and thickens, stirring constantly; remove from heat. In small bowl, beat egg yolks slightly; gradually blend about 1/4 of hot lemon mixture into egg yolks. Return egg Yolk mixture to saucepan; cook 2 to 3 minutes, stirring constantly. Cool. Heat oven to 450F. In large bowl, beat egg whites and cream of tartar until foamy. Gradually add 3/4 cup sugar beating until stiff peaks form.
To assemble cake, split each layer in half horizontally to form 4 layers. Place 1 layer on over proof serving plate; spread with 1/3 of filling. Spread meringue over top and sides of cake. Bake frosted cake at 450F for 4 to 5 minutes or until meringue is light golden brown. Cool completely. Store in refrigerator.
Makes 12 servings.
Cajun Country -- New Iberia, Louisiana