Best Group Deal Sites?

  1. LivingSocial – Online marketplace with deals for restaurants, personal care, trips, events, and shopping.
  2. Groupon – Connects local merchants with people looking for deals on shopping, travel, spas, and activities.
  3. Woot! – Daily deals and limited time specials for electronics, sporting goods, accessories, computers, tools, wine, gifts, and original t-shirts.
  4. Tee Fury – The best in pop culture t-shirts, hoodies, skirts, and posters. Features daily specials for new limited edition designs.
  5. Deal Flicks – Movie tickets up to 60% off.
  6. Fab – a design focused company offering fun and unique products including clothing, jewelry, gadgets and adult toys.
  7.  Gilt – Membership shopping site for luxury designer label merchandise.
  8. Slickdeals – Online community that shares, reviews and rates coupons and other online sales deals.
  9. Yipit – When you don’t have time to visit all of those individually, use this to search and browse every deal, coupon and discount in your city from Groupon, LivingSocial, Yelp and 800+ others.
  10. Restaurant.com – Save up to 50% off at participating restaurants in the U.S.
  11. TravelZoo – Global travel deal site with specials on airfare, hotels, cruises, car rentals, tours, and activities.

Most Popular Donut Flavors?

  1. Glazed donuts are the best sellers, perhaps because they are so good for dunking in coffee.
  2. Chocolate Frosted yeast donuts are the second favorite. (But my #1!)
  3. Chocolate frosted with custard or cream filling comes next in popularity.
  4.  Next are glazed donuts with jelly filling. (Mmmmm, raspberry!)
  5. Fifth are donuts with sprinkles. These are always a favorite with kids and the young-at-heart.
  6. Powdered cake donuts are next. These may be popular because you can buy them in tasty bite-sizes at groceries and convenience stores.
  7. Cake donuts coated with cinnamon and sugar are next. These are for the people who really wanted a cinnamon roll but couldn’t find a Cinnabon.
  8. Chocolate cake donuts are the next most popular. These may just be glazed or may have a double choclate glaze.
  9. Blueberry cake donuts are the ninthfavorite. They’re like dense blueberry muffin.
  10. Tenth are maple glazed donuts. (These might rank higher in the northeast US where maple flavoring is more popular.)

Best Cookbooks for New Cooks?

What’s best depends on what you want to do and learn. Do you want to know why a recipe works so that you can learn to improvise your own or do you just want dependable instructions for your favorite dishes?

sci of good cooking

If you want to know the “how and why”, The Science of Good Cooking by Cook’s Illustrated is an excellent choice and one of my favorites. There are 400 recipes and each describes not just what to do, but why doing it that way works best.

The 400 recipes are used to teach 50 basic concepts beginning with “Gentle heat prevents overcooking” to “Cocoa powder delivers big flavor”. In between you learn that salty marinades work best, fat makes eggs tender, how to “bloom” spices to increase their flavor, and why you should put vodka in your pie dough.

Continue reading Best Cookbooks for New Cooks?

Candidates Schedules?

Trying to find when and where you can see your favorite (or least favorite) candidate? These sites list candidate events.

Hillary Clinton

Bernie Sanders

Donald Trump

Ted Cruz

John Kasich

Best Hot Chocolate Recipes?

It looks like a lot of the U.S. is in for some chilly weather on Sunday. Here’s just the thing to warm you up!

French Hot Chocolate

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This one is thick and not very sweet. (I love it, my other taster who prefers sweeter hot chocolate thought it was too bitter without lots of whipped cream.)

1 4-oz. bar of bittersweet chocolate (not semi-sweet)
3/4 cup whole milk
1/4 cup heavy cream
1 teaspoon powdered sugar
whipped cream

Break up the chocolate bar into small pieces. Set aside.

Heat milk, heavy cream, and powdered sugar in a heavy saucepan over medium-high heat. When the milk mixture starts to bubble, remove it from the heat and whisk in chocolate pieces until they are melted and the drink is thick and smooth.

Pour into small cups (it’s very rich, you don’t need much) and top with whipped cream. Serves 2.

Continue reading Best Hot Chocolate Recipes?