On Friday morning I opened my email to read this post. Emma, a friend in real life and one of my favourite baking bloggers, has decided not to post any new recipes on Poires au Chocolat while she gets to grips with her graduate medicine course. Rather than leave the blog completely static, she’ll be revisiting recipes on occasion, treating the blog something like an ever-evolving book, but I’m still sad that we won’t be seeing many (any) new recipes for the foreseeable future.
One of the reasons Emma cites for her decision to take a step back is that she simply doesn’t have the time to test and edit new recipes. As this blog has evolved, the importance of (at least) triple testing recipes has become increasingly important to me, too. While I still think a blog should be more instant, accessible and certainly less edited than a cookbook, the recipes do have to work. Some of the archived recipes on this site make me slightly nervous – especially with my cookbook coming out next year – and the idea of going back and re-testing, tweaking and developing, as Emma plans to do, is seriously appealing: quality over quantity, tried and tested favourites over the constant quest for something new.
On the weekend I made these pumpkin pie squares. Based loosely on this pumpkin pie, they weren’t an entirely new entity and I hoped with a little fiddling on Saturday and Sunday I could confidently bring you a lovely new recipe in plenty of time for Thanksgiving. Maybe two or three years ago, I’d have done just that, but they’re not quite perfect. For starters I set my timer in hours, not minutes (yes really, I have no clue how this happened either) so I couldn’t promise you an exact baking time, and for seconds the buttery pecan shortbread base wasn’t quite as crisp as I’d ideally like.
So no new recipe today, or not for pumpkin pie squares at least. If you’re craving something pumpkin-y, I can highly recommend these Wholemeal Maple Pumpkin Pies or Pumpkin Muffins with Maple Crunch. Or if you missed them (there were a few problems with my blog feed) you might like to try the Chocolate, Peanut Butter and Blueberry Oatmeal Cookies I posted last week. All triple tested, totally delicious and the perfect way to kick start a rainy November week (preferably accompanied by a glass of champagne to toast Emma’s utterly brilliant blog). XO.
13 RESPONSES TO Pumpkin Pecan Shortbread Squares
I was shocked when I read Emma’s post too, but am glad she’s going to keep updating Poires! I agree with her though – triple checking is the way to go, and when you don’t have time for it, you just don’t. Glad you’re still here! These bars look fabulous.
I was so sad to read Emma’s retirement post too! I do like the idea that she’ll keep the site open and running though, I love referring back through her work, either for the recipes themselves, or just a bit of inspiration, and a good read. I know what you mean about earlier recipes, I do get very worried when people say they’re making some of my earlier recipes. A look back through and a few more test runs are on the cards. Looking forward to seeing these bars when they’re finished – the current version already looks delicious! x
Ah, such a shame that she’s stopping! She has some seriously beautiful and delicious recipes (I visit occasionally).
These bars look fantastic too, by the way – cut to perfection!
I totally get where you are coming from with this. To keep up with the momentum with which most of us started our blogs is becoming increasingly harder, and I’ve noticed fewer posts but of high quality from a number of bloggers, including yourself. If I had the time and an infinite resource of butter I would love to go back and retest all my recipes, but like you I feel that at this point, taking the time to make a recipe work rather than publishing for publishing’s sake is the best way forward. Case in point last weekend – I made blackberry scones which looked nice but were a bit meh. Safe to say I think I’m learning too that the best posts aren’t frequent, but the ones baked, photographed and written with care. Sad to see PaC slow down but will still look to it for inspiration like I always do and kudos for the honest post. VSPP x
Blackberry scones sound amazing, please perfect the recipe soon! x
I was also saddened to see Emma’s post, I think people who don’t have a blog don’t realize the amount of time, love and attention that goes into each and every post.
Luckily you and Emma both have incredible backlogs of fabulous recipes and it will be nice to revisit some of them! L x
Ha, I feel the same about quite a lot of the posts in my archive. I’ve started to remove some of the recipes from posts so that I can re-test them again to make sure that they actually do work and it wasn’t just a fluke…
I agree, it’s so important to make sure our recipes work and that takes work, so I can appreciate when bloggers find they really can’t keep up with it all.
Love these bars. A lovely alternative to pie 🙂
Lovely bars, that’s all I can say!
I think it is very sad that Poires au Chocolat has come to an end too. However, I am actually quite a fan of seeing blogs where the rough-and-ready-recipes in the budding stages of development crop up. Perhaps they aren’t perfect, and might not quite work, but you often get to see that process grow – from the initial (maybe totally bizarre) idea being picked up by other bloggers around, and worked on into something bigger and better!
I know what you mean – it’s certainly fascinating to see how different people adapt certain recipes.
The idea of going back and reworking (and rephotographing!) some of the recipes on my blog really appeals to me, too. There are definitely some recipes in my archives that make me a bit nervous as well. I seriously might have to consider doing this in the coming months (especially with a new baby and a busy work season coming up).
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