This category covers groceries, restaurants, bars, alcohol, entertaining and recipes.

Flourless Cloud Cake by Ri

Bake The Best Gluten Free Chocolate Cake

This simple-to-make chocolate dessert topped with whipped cream is so rich you’ll be shocked to learn it’s gluten free.

Flourless Cloud Cake by Ri

EASY & ICONIC | Just when I’d thought there couldn’t possibly be another dessert recipe out there that was both dead easy—as in taking no time to make—and iconic—as in representing the absolute apex of a particular type of sweet—I run into Richard Sax’s indulgent chocolate cloud cake, a flourless treat so rich and satisfying that serious chocoholics will have little trouble choosing between it and sex. Read more

Boucoup de Baggu

Frugalbits Faves: Baggu & Nutribullet

It’s never too early to be thinking about Christmas. Here are two of our favourite, inexpensive products to put under wraps for December.

Boucoup de Baggu

PRODUCTS WE LOVE | Of course we stand behind every one of the hundreds of stories we’ve produced for this website since we launched in April 2010—we wouldn’t have done any one of them if we hadn’t thought that the information would be of value to Frugalbits readers. But some of these posts have had more impact on our own lives than others—the following two, for example. —Team Frugalbits

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www.randomhouse.com

This Cookbook Is All About Pretty & Sweet

Rosie Daykin’s new cookbook, Butter Baked Goods, offers treat lovers 100 sweet ways to say yum. (SNEAK PEEK)

Butter Baked Goods - Janis Nicolay

NEW NOW NEXT | It maybe be a little early to be thinking about what to get your foodie friends for Christmas, but I’m pretty sure mine will be receiving copies of Rosie Daykin’s Butter Baked Goods: Nostalgic Recipes from a Little Neighborhood Bakery. Not that I’ve thumbed through an actual copy of the cookbook yet—it won’t be available to purchase until mid October. What I have had is a sneak peek at a few of the pages, and I can tell you that they’re every bit as visually enticing as everything else this talented Vancouver interior designer/ successful baker turns her hand to. Read more

Fresh berries (plate clipping path)

Make The Berry Best Dessert In Under 5

Clafoutis is unquestionably the most delicious and fruity dessert you can make in less than five minutes.

Fresh berries (plate clipping path)

 

EASY & DELISH | Some people call French clafoutis (pronounced cla-FOU-tee) a pancake-like dessert, while others say it’s more flanlike. No matter how you describe it, if it’s made with any fruit besides black cherries, it’s technically not a clafoutis but a flaugnarde—though no one we know, including superstar cookbook author Donna Hay, whose recipe we’ve adapted here, uses that term. So we’ll continue to call our favourite summer dessert—the easiest/sweetest thing you’ll ever make—a mixed berry clafoutis too. Read more

Sweet Surprise

Inexpensive Tortes That Take The Cake

If you’re in a rush or dessert from scratch isn’t your thing, one of these inexpensive frozen tortes will take the cake.

Sweet Surprise

 

EASY & DELISH |  Whenever I have a dinner party and, pressed for time, serve the attractive ready-made gluten-free dessert pictured here, my guests are often astonished to learn it was purchased at a home furnishings store. “No way,” was how one incredulous friend who knows my penchant for purchasing sweets put it recently. “I would have sworn you picked it up at some pricey little Euro-type bakery.” Read more

Whole Foods Wedding Cake - Wonderlust Photography

Alternatives To The Multitier Wedding Cake

 Instead of a single—and expensive—multitier wedding cake, some couples are serving up something different.

Whole Foods Wedding Cake - Wonderlust Photography

 

TREND ALERT | Traditional multitiered wedding cakes are expensive. Top Vancouver pastry chef Peter Fong of Ganache Patisserie charges on average $9 per guest for his wedding confections, while Sweet Thea, former pastry chef at some of B.C.’s very best restaurants, charges between $5 and $6 for hers. There’s no doubt that both of these talented cake makers make cakes that look and taste exquisite, but with so many other expenses plus guests to wine and dine, is it really necessary to spend between $600 and $1,000 (for an estimated 100 plus guests) for a delicious, eye-catching wedding cake? Read more

Sophia Vartanian - Modern Farmer magazine

A New Magazine For Modern Farmer Types

This new international magazine with a Vancouver connection is for anyone interested in where their food comes from.

Sophia Vartanian - Modern Farmer magazine

 

NEW NOW NEXT | While magazine publishers everywhere are getting out of print, Vancouver billionaire philanthropist Frank Guistra is jumping in. Last month, Modern Farmer, a new quarterly magazine on farming, which comes in both print and digital versions, launched in the U.S. with Guistra’s name listed prominently on the masthead as equity partner. Guistra is betting on the public growing ever more inquisitive about where their food comes from, how it’s produced, and how they can participate in the modern farmer movement. And he is counting on the talent and international connections of editor-in-chief Ann Marie Gardner, who made a name for herself as a writer and producer at Monocle and New York Times T: Travel, two stylish magazines known for nailing the zeitgeist. Read more

Gaby Dalkin's muffin-tin frittata

How To Make Muffin-Tin Frittatas

Super easy muffin-tin frittatas let you socialize with brunch guests instead of slaving in the kitchen. (RECIPE)

Gaby Dalkin's muffin-tin frittata

 

QUICK & EASY | In a few weeks, I’ll be hosting a post-wedding brunch. I want to serve something eggy, but I don’t want to hang around in my kitchen cooking eggs when I could be kibitzing with our guests. My friend Kerry suggested that to save time and whole lot of stress I might want to make muffin-tin frittatas, either baking them in advance (and rewarming them before serving) or mixing the ingredients ahead of time, plopping them into tins and popping these into the oven when we start to lay out our spread. Read more

Black Bananas - C. Rule

How To Ripen Fresh Bananas In 15 Minutes

Who knew that if you needed to, you could ripen bananas this quickly.

Yellow Bananas-  shutterstock

 

EASY & DELISH | Several weeks ago, I was invited to a dinner party and asked to supply dessert. I wanted to take along Caren McSherry’s no-brainer five-minute banana ice cream (CLICK HERE for the recipe) but did not have overripe bananas on hand, could not find any at the grocery store and lacked the (several days) time it takes to force-ripen fresh bananas in a brown bag.

I was explaining this predicament to my foodie friend Anne when she suggested I speed-ripen my bananas by popping them the oven. “This trick is so easy,” she told me. “And oven-ripened bananas taste just as sweet as ones that have been left to over ripen on their own. I love they way they look, too. Their transformation is so radical it makes me think of magic.”

Here’s how Anne ripens bananas, and what yellow bananas look like after they’ve been in the oven. Read more

Popcron in a wooden bowl.

Make 100% Healthy Microwave Popcorn

How to make 100% healthy microwave popcorn in minutes for pennies a pop.

Popcorn - iStock

 

EASY & DELISH | While I love the convenience of microwave popcorn, I stopped buying this product several years ago because of worrisome news about the potential health risks to humans posed by exposure to chemicals found both in the fake butter flavoring on microwave popcorn kernels and on the lining of microwave popping bags.

I also stopped buying commercial brand microwave popcorn because a friend showed me how to make a cheaper, healthier, equally quick alternative. Read more