I love experimenting at home with new recipes and new techniques.  Unfortunately, my whims are not always in line with my budget. I am always searching for economical ways to indulge my creative side.

One of my favorite money saving tricks has been using mini-bottles of liquor.

One mini-bottle measures 50 ml, which equals 1/4 cup liquid measure. Ounce for ounce, buying larger sizes of bourbon, rum, brandy, etc. is certainly cheaper. However, if you are experimenting with a liquor you are not sure you will enjoy, or will only use sparingly in a few recipes, minis present a great way to save money.

Some package stores carry miniature sizes of more exotic fare such as flavored vodkas or liqueurs. Small samples of unusual flavors offer a great way to separate treat from tragedy without a large investment.

There are many delicious ways to use spirits in cooking, from deglazing a pan to finishing a sauce, drizzling over ice cream, or simply stirring a splash into an after-dinner java.

Thanks to mini-bottles, you can have fun without breaking the bank.