I am a big fan of www.RecipeSource.com , the collection from the Univ. of Calif at Berkley. Also, www.RecipeCenter.com ; it has a scalable recipe feature. Tons and tons of recipes and no fee... what, excatly, does the fee cover?
It's not so much a recipe site as it is a class webpage, but check out www2. hawaii. edu/~fleake/escoffiersummer. If you click on the "modules" link on the side of the page, then select your desired module (meats, vegetables, etc), finally, select the "Lecture Notes" link for the selected module you'll be privy to Chef Frank Leake's personal recipes (as well as his notes on the fundamentals of cooking for that module). It's a nice resource for a beginner seeing as it includes the notes, but some of the recipes don't include ingredient amounts as he figures once you've reached that module in class you'll know the appropriate ratios, etc for that type of food production. Most times, though, the notes above the recipes detail those missing ratios.
As much as I learned in that class, the webpage is poorly laid out in my opinion. Still, lots of good information if you can find it.
In a way I do to, prefer books and magazines but the online sites are sometimes more, well in depth on certian recipes and various techniques. Cooks Illustrated is one that is a great example of this. mmorgan you would not be wasting money joining this site it is an excellent soure for recipes, techniques, and reviews on everything from pans to mixers and then some check it out at