Worried that a tight food budget will forever condemn you to a life of bland, boring cuisine? Think again! You can eat gourmet, regardless how much money you have to spend at the grocery store. The secret to haute cuisine at knockoff prices lies in shifting your focus from so-called gourmet ingredients to preparing food in new and innovative ways. It's adding a new twist to an old classic or finding a spice that transforms the same old thing into something your family will rave about. After all, anyone with a big enough budget can make lobster or caviar look good, but creating a gourmet meal that doesn't break the bank takes real skill and planning. Try these five frugal gourmet recipes for extravagant meals on a shoestring budget.
Read the next page to learn how to make gourmet dumplings on the cheap.