Saturday, 30 March 2013

Four Years



Today, Poires au Chocolat turns four.

To celebrate, I've decided to give out some presents. To thank you all for reading, for making my recipes, for the emails, the comments, the opportunities and generally being so enthusiastic and supportive (and because four is my favourite number).

I've picked the two things that I use every single time I bake: electric scales and high-quality heatproof spatulas. When I went to California last year, I packed my scales and two of these spatulas into my suitcase.

I am a big supporter of scales, metric and weighing ingredients for baking - and not just because I grew up with the system. If you're still not convinced, try reading this excellent post by Stella of BraveTart, or this article by Alice Medrich. As for the spatulas, a perfectly scraped bowl or pan makes washing up much easier and means you never waste mixture.

I wish I could send presents to all of you but four is all I can manage. But still - thank you. I genuinely wouldn't be where I am without your support.



How to get a present/the small print:

- This is open to everyone. I will post to anywhere in the world. You don't need to be a longtime reader or a regular commenter. I only ask that you genuinely want to use them.

- To enter the draw, leave a comment below (or, if you're reading this on email or a reader, click through to the post and leave a comment), telling me if you would like to receive the scales or one of the three spatulas. If you already have some scales, please let them go to someone who needs them (I hoard spatulas so you can have as many as you like). The draw will close at midnight GMT on Tuesday the 9th April 2013, ten days from today. I will randomly pick four people and email them for address details.

- To emphasise the fact that this is completely free of any links with the companies that make or sell these items, I've only shown them wrapped (and because it feels more like giving a present). I promise they exist. I went out to the shops and bought them with my own money and I will post them out of my own pocket too. Both are brands that I use everyday and trust to work for you too.

10/04/13: I have now closed the draw, randomly selected the names and sent out the emails... please check your inbox!

*

Finally, out of curiosity, who remembers the early days of this header? I found it in the depths of my filing system a few days ago.



Three more celebratory posts:
One year: Pear and Chocolate Loaf Cake
100 posts: Butterfly Fleur de Sel Caramel Cake
Three years: Poires Belle Helene

465 comments:

  1. Mari @ Oh, Sweet & Savory30 March 2013 17:05

    Happy four years! I don't have a scale so I would love one!

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  2. Happy Birthday to you! My blog is 4 on April Fool's day, so one day younger than yours! It's a much less wonderful affair but gives me great pleasure to do. Yours is one of those I find most inspirational. Should my name be picked, I'd choose a spatula please. I have a lovely set of Salter scales that I love. :-)

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  3. Congratulations! I love you. :)

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  4. Happy Birthday to Poires Au Chocolat! Spatula please!

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  5. Eva {not your mama's dinner}30 March 2013 17:19

    Huray! Congratulations! I love the sound of unwrapping gifts and I don't have a scale...

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  6. Happy Birthday - I've loved reading your blog since I discovered it this past christmas! I made your brown butter loaf to try out my silicone tin, and it was really tasty :) I'd appreciate being in the draw for some electric scales - I only have some cheap manual ones that my housemates commandeered to make cakes in once, scratching the bowl to hell and cracking it down one side.

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  7. Oh, I'd love the scale! I learned to bake properly in a Swiss kitchen, and since returning home to the US I haven't gotten around to buying a scale. Happy birthday to the blog!

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  8. Happy Birthday, thanks for many a mouth watering recipe and for your honest discussions and opinions.

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  9. Congratulations on four years! I love your blog and wish you many years more! I too am a big supporter of weighing. My scale died last week, so I am definitely in need of a new one!

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  10. Happy Blorgthday, Emma! :D (no need to be entered into the drawing; just wanted to wish you congrats.)

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  11. Happy Four Year! Your blog is great!! I bake all of the time and have been wanting to start using a scale forever, I wish weight measurements were a bigger trend in the U.S.!

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  12. I completely second this motion - when I moved into my current apartment in America with American roommates they looked at me like I was crazy when I came back from Target with a set of scales. And cookie trays that are flat rather than having lipped edges, but that is a whole other story!

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  13. Oh, Happy Blog Birthday! It is an amazing achievement, so really well done!


    I'd love the scales because I'm going to really need a pair in September! Unfortunately with the amount of my possessions I'm going to be shipping back to England from California almost all of my kitchen equipment is going to have to be donated to my roommates, the set of cheap yet efficient scales I purchased in September included. Back in England, while there are loads of different options in my mothers kitchen, when I finally find a flat in London I am going to be left with the pair I was using last year which are not electronic, do not calibrate properly so I have to factor an extra 7g into my measurement and are really useless for baking, only good for rough cooking measurement where I don't really need them anyway - so I need a new pair!


    Also, I'm now curious what brand of spatula you use and it makes me feel less like an oddball for having a favourite brand of spatula.

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  14. Hello! I've been following this blog for quite a long time now and I have used (and enjoyed) so many of the recipes!
    Congratulations with the four years.
    I would like one of the spatulas. I live in Denmark and I was really surprised when i read the articles. Over here you ALWAYS weight your ingredients. I have had to order a cup meausuring set from the US because I use so many American recipes. But I would recommend everyone to weight the ingredients instead. It's much more precise.

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  15. I love looking a the pictures on your blog - looking at them always makes me so hungry!

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  16. Cypora and Ariel Cohen30 March 2013 18:01

    Happy birthday! I would love the scales. I just finished reading through Bouchon Bakery and am now convinced to ditch my old fashioned scales for digital.

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  17. Congratulations.
    In my oppinion it's quite some work you put into your blog here. I think each single one of your readers is thankful for the delicious recipes you shared with us - at least I am! Thanks to this blog there is quite an amount of sweet stuff on my to-do-list... an other spatula would be useful, very.
    Please continue to enjoy baking, writing and photographing. I look foward to next year. (no preasure, none at all from my side... ^.~ )

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  18. Congratulations and a happy four years! I would love to have a scale!

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  19. Congratulations on your four years! I have been following you blog for quite some time and I have always enjoyed your writing and baking skills. Either one of your nicely packed presents would be great. Thank you, Emma!

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  20. Spatulas! And Emma! Congratulations! Four years of blogging amazes me. It's like we've raised toddler bloggers, almost old enough not to need us anymore as they launch into kindergarten and lives of their own! What a nice way to celebrate here.

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  21. Anna (64colorbox)30 March 2013 18:29

    Happy Birthday/Anniversary! It's very generous of you to offer gifts for your celebration. I would love the scale. I've recently begun making yeast breads, to get the precise measurements, a scale is highly recommended.


    Thanks for sharing your wonderful recipes with us. I enjoy following your blog.

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  22. Oh my that's so generous of you! I'd absolutely love the scales I have gone to uni and feel bereft without my ones at home.

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  23. Happy four years!! I love your blog and I would love to receive a scale (your recipes are tricky for me to convert! ) Thanks for being so wonderful! Happy day!

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  24. I would love to have spatulas! Congratulations, Emma! Your blog and posts always inspire me! I Keep it up! xx

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  25. Jeni- Emma's Mum30 March 2013 18:55

    Congratulations! Thank you - I don't need either as a present.


    I have several of these particular spatulas and they are brilliant. They withstand very high temperatures and are so useful.

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  26. Congrat Emma, found you recently and LOVE your blog, keep educating me on the history and myths of food, fabulous! I would love a spatula, cheers me dear :)

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  27. I think I have been reading for about 2.5 years and this is the first time I've posted! I would love some scales as I just smashed mine this morning :s

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  28. Pam golden Umlauf30 March 2013 19:26

    I have followed you religiously ever since I saw your post of the crepe cake. Beautiful pictures and I love reading your posts! Happy birthday! Inspired by you I have also started a blog, although its not as elegant as yours. I would so love to hear your thoughts on it. www.thetwisted-fork.com Either gift is fine with me....anything for the kitchen is so welcome in my home!

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  29. Sarah Latchem30 March 2013 20:26

    Your blog makes me smile every time, its so comforting to read :)

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  30. Congratulations from Austria! Like your blog! Spatulas would be great!

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  31. Happy 4th birthday Emma. Responding just because I love your blog. No need to enter me in the draw as I have both scales and spatulas. Love your original and practical thought on this - and the fact you're not advertising anything!

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  32. Now I feel bad for wanting to get a spatula since I'm a first timer. I am glad though that i stumbled upon your blog. I am excited to be a new member!

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  33. Congratulations!!! I've only recently begun following your blog, but it's amazing and I sincerely wish I'd stumbled upon it sooner!
    A spatula would be fantastic :)
    Keep on baking and writing!

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  34. Congratulations! Although I don't really post at all, I've enjoyed reading your posts and looking at your pictures that make my stomach growl ;)

    If I could receive the scale I would be so happy!

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  35. I too love a good spatula, and have many of them, but a good scale wouldn't go astray in my kitchen. I love to bake but I've yet to find a set of scales that suits me, not that I've looked very hard!
    Congrats on 4 years and I look forward to many more!

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  36. Happy Anniversary! A spatula would be a lovely present - and much appreciated by my husband also! I am the baker, but he's the one who often has to deal with the chaos afterwards! (which is just fair given the delights he may get to eat ;o) )

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  37. Happy Anniversary Emma! I already have a scale that I love, but would love a spatula!

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  38. Linda (from Norway)30 March 2013 22:02

    Congratulations! Just recently discovered yor blog and I love it:-) A scale would be fantastic.

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  39. Congrats!! What a wonderful milestone :)

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  40. Anne Heedrich30 March 2013 22:18

    Hello Emma,
    thank you for this great giveaway and HAPPY BLOG-BIRTHDAY! I already have quite a good scale but I looooove spatulas and I think I could need a new one :-)
    I would love to see the Puff-Pastry-Post soon. Remember, we talked about it over Facebook a few weeks ago.
    Love, Anne

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  41. Emily Sturgess30 March 2013 22:19

    Hooray!! You're four! :D And long may you continue, bean! <3 (ps, if i ever need a spatula, I'mna just pop across the street, yeh...?) xxx

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  42. Justine Anderson30 March 2013 22:22

    Happy Blog Birthday AND Happy Easter! I would love the spatulas and the measuring scale. I recently moved to Sydney from NZ and have NO baking/cooking equipment. I miss making a mess in the kitchen!

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  43. Happy Birthday Poires au Chocolat! Love your blog! Liz

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  44. Happy Birthday! We have some nice scales here, so I'd love a spatula :)

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  45. Would love the scales as yesterday mine fell out of the cupboard and now say that everything weighs 124grams. How can I make your great recipes?, I will get Poires au chocolat withdrawal and have to be hospitalized!! Can you stand that on your conscience???

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  46. Katja Cicnerol31 March 2013 00:10

    Hey,
    I discovered your blog just few months ago, but it's so brilliant that I view it regularly and I even read your story together with the recepies from the start.

    I would like to have the scale as I just started living on my own (I am a student of literature) and I don't have a proper scale yet, so I have to do all my measuring with a measuring cup, which can cause problems with ingredients other than flour and milk (:

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  47. Hi Emma, I have been reading your blog for a while now, you have inspired a couple of recipes here! I would love a genuinely heat-proof spatula, I have cooked more than my fair share of supposedly heat-proof ones... Thanks for sharing your culinary experiments.

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  48. Happy four years!! So thrilled for you! I would love one of the spatulas!

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  49. Stephanie West31 March 2013 00:59

    Four years? In blog years, that's getting up there! Happy anniversary, Emma! (PS - That scale would be perfect to make 'That Chocolate Cake' and act as an early birthday present for myself. :-))

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  50. Happy 4th Birthday, Poires au Chocolat (and many more to come!).
    Thank you for another inspiring post - I've never really thought why chefs/amateur bakers use spatulas, and your practical explanation convinced me so I'd love to get one from you! Hope you have a lovely day.

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  51. I remember the pears! They still appear as the thumbnail icon in my feedly (aka new Google Reader). I have both already so will let someone else experience the eureka moments of going "why didn't I have this tool before?!" A very cool idea for a giveaway.

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  52. Happy 4th Birthday! Wanted to wish you a sincere congratulations and thank you for all your beautiful and inspiring posts. It was reading through your journey that I made the decision to follow my love for cooking and join culinary school. I've always been quite meticulous with measurements but since I started university I haven't had a scale on hand. Considering I love to bake for friends every week, I'd love to be able to have the scale you recommend! Take care and all the best for the future!

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  53. I would love another spatula! The ones I have are five years old and have been great but definitely would love an addition to the family!

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  54. Happy blog birthday!! Four years is impressive! I'd love a spatula – you can never have too many and I already have a set of scales (that I use aaaall the time).

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  55. Kathryn Leahey31 March 2013 03:41

    Happy birthday. One can never have too many spatulas...

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  56. I love your blog! Such beautiful pictures and great recipes! You're an inspiration!

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  57. Joanna @ the knitlit twit31 March 2013 04:56

    Happy blog-day! I have a scale currently that is two years younger than I am, it's an absolutely necessity for me because I count calories. There is no such thing as too many spatulas.

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  58. Hannah @ grove st. kitchen31 March 2013 05:28

    Congrats! I've only just started reading your blog in the last few months, but I love the elegance of all your recipes. Please put me in the running for the scales. You are too sweet for sending out presents on your own blog-birthday.

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  59. I would love a kitchen scale! I'm a college foodie, which means a lot of perusal of food blogs and stress-baking cookies around finals time. Thank you for your lovely posts, which help me survive dining hall food!

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  60. I really think your site is cool.
    I am still a student, studying at school.

    I really want to be a pastry chef.
    I read your site, I love it to death!

    My weights and measures are all out of whack.
    I need the scales to put my cakes back on track!!

    Happy Birthday!!!! Poires au Chocolat!! :)

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  61. Happy Birthday!!! What a lovely blog :) I'd love a spatula. I already have scales and love them!! Thank you :)

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  62. I really love your blog, I think it's neat. I'd love the scale; I am going to college in the US when home is all the way in Indonesia so I can't have any of my baking stuff with me (or more like my mom's).


    Thanks, and congrats on fourth year!

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  63. Happy Birthday Poires Au Chocolat!! Oh how I love you! You have been my go to place for everything yummy! I have tried many of your recipes and had wonderful results! I would be thrilled with a spatula. I already have scales and I use them all the time! They are a must for baking! I have a lot of spatulas too so I guess I would be just as thrilled if someone who really needed one got one. Thank you for always providing us with blueprints for delicious delicacies!! Keep up the great work and again...Happy Birthday!!

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  64. Happy 4th birthday to your blog! What a fantastic milestone to achieve. :) It's so thoughtful of you to host a giveaway to celebrate. I already have a scale, and you are correct, it's a lot more precise than measuring by cups! ;) So, I would love to win a spatulas instead. My old favorite one is tearing apart so a new one would comes in handy. Thank you in advance.

    amy [at] utry [dot] it

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  65. Happy 4th blog birthday Emma. That beautiful and damned cake is a source of constant inspiration...has been for years! If I get picked, I'd love the spatulas, as I have a couple of scales.

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  66. I bought my first electric scales on friday! I used to have old scales that measured different every time... So I would LOVE on of your spatulas! Thanks for the chance to win and happy anniversary!

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  67. Sarvani @ baker-in-disguise31 March 2013 09:06

    Happy blog birthday!! 4 years.. incredible!! If picked.. I'd go for the electric scales.. while it will make my baking easier.. but I want them especially for one thing.. and that's macarons.. I have attempted those tricky little things seven (!) times over the past year and a half.. and I have done everything as asked and its never worked out.. and I have a sneaky feeling.. not using an electric scale and going for approximate measurements on my mom's old style weighing scale could be the culprit!! :))

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  68. Congratulations! I am in awe of what you do. I would LOVE a spatula! My mother is my cooking inspiration and I have all her old bakeware, but I recently discovered that her spatulas are not heatproof when I ended up with a pan full of melted plastic!

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  69. Happy 4th Birthday, to a wonderful blog that is a constant source of inspiration! I would love to win any of the 4 prizes on offer, and think it is so sweet of you.

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  70. Happy Easter and Happy Blog-Birthday! This is by far the most delicious baking blog I know of! I would love a spatula.. :)

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  71. Hooray! I'm a new fan and glad I found you. I would love either a scale or spatula. Thank you!

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  72. I would love the scales. Thank you for your helpful, honest posts. Congratulations on four years of writing an excellent blog, and for all of your other great and forthcoming accomplishments!

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  73. Emma, First of all, Congrats on completing 4 years of blogging. This indeed is one of my fav blogs and I am the happiest reader and glad that 4 yrs back, you started something that has given me a great perspective and creativity on baking. I am thankful for this blog because I got to know you, who has been so prompt in helping me personally with my baking queries and confusion. It feels like my Birthday here :)


    That said, I can't wait to put my hands on kitchen tools with which you do your magic and my pick is 'scales' because I already have many many spatulas. Frankly, I can never get tired of spatulas and they are my little wonders in the kitchen but I have to admit that my baking currently lacks the precision that can get better with scales. So yeah, scales for me...and Spatulas for everyone else because everyone should experience the delight that I do when I spoon myself with spatula in the kitchen!

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  74. Congrats on 4 years and all that has come with it! Id love the spatulas please!!!!

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  75. Happy 4th Birthday Poires au Chocolat :) I have just poured lemon possets into terracotta pots for our Easter dinner, as we have been to see Macbeth recently. I also printed your historical information about possets. A spatula would be delightful. Happy Easter xxx

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  76. happy birthday Poires au Chocolat! I stumbled upon this blog randomly one day and was hooked ever since. Would love the scale please! My 10 year old scale came to a tragic end while I was trying to bake one day and the cake came out.. well, not so good! congratulations once again and happy easter!!

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  77. Caryn Hellberg31 March 2013 09:52

    Happy 4th birthday to one of my favourite blogs! It makes my day when I see a new blog post from you in my inbox. I have a fantastic scale, but have to say that I still haven't found a spatula that I love - so my wish would have to be for a spatula as I am sure that your favourite would be an excellent one!

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  78. Happy Birthday PoC. Your recipes are always so reliable and delicious :') Would appreciate a new spatula! Thanks for your generosity~ and keep the chocolate running for more years to come!

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  79. Dear Emma
    Your blog has been both a wonderful encouragement and a valuable teacher. Thank you.
    I would wish for scales :)

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  80. Happy 4th birthday Poires au chocolate~ I would love to receive a scale please.
    Thank you and looking forward to more fantastic delights.
    Cheers~

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  81. Congratulations on 4 years! I adore your blog, it's my absolute favourite. I would really appreciate either item. I stayed at my 'home town' University for my Undergrad, but will soon be moving away for my Postgrad studies. As such, I need to stock up on kitchen equipment, so I can continue baking to my heart's content whilst I'm away. Plus I will need to continue to try out your recipes ;-) Either item would have a very loving home with me.

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  82. Goodness, you'll get hundreds of comments here. But this is an excellent blog, and you deserve the attention. Either scales or spatula would be gratefully received here, should I be lucky enough - spatulas are always useful, and I need a new decent set of scales for accurate small metric measurements, and it's on my list to get soon.

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  83. Congratulations! I love your blog and have just made the salted caramel brownies recipe. Delicious! I would love a spatula. I'm still pretty new to baking but your blog is a wonderful inspiration.

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  84. Stephanie - The Dessert Spoon31 March 2013 10:54

    Congratulations! I love reading your blog. It is so intelligently written and beautifully photographed.

    I already have a set of scales, so I would much prefer the spatula; thank you!

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  85. Congratulation, I think your blog is inspirational, intelligent and full of integrity. I am only an occasional reader and have not been brave enough to try any recipies but that it not to say I do not get a great deal of pleasure from reading it. Thank you,... here's to another 4 years! (I would be very happy with a spatula!).

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  86. I follow your blog since 2010 when I was looking for a recipe with pears and chocolate. I found the recipe

    Pear and Chocolate Loaf and I fall in love with your blog.

    Happy birthday blog to you and for all who enjoy your recipes.

    I would love one of the spatulas.

    Thank you for sharing yours recipes with us!!!

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  87. Hi Emma, and merry Easter to you. I would love one of your recommended spatulas. The last one I had was made of jelly, I believe. As I realise how essential they are in the kitchen. It's just not the sort of item a man is allowed to put on his Xmas list.

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  88. Congratulations on the 4 years! I would love one of the spatulas. I can't remember how I came across your blog once, but I'm really glad I did :).

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  89. Thank you for the wonderful blog. I come here every time I need a cake recipe! I would very much appreciate a scale.

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  90. Dear Emma, I was so happy the day I discovered your blog, almost two years ago! I've left many a comment here, and also on Instagram (at)elizabethaball - Liz B! Mostly because I am also English, and I love to read your stories of England and baking. But also because I too have gone through a tough few years, and its always nice to experience life together and help make decisions between studying and following cooking dreams.
    I would really love, love a new set of scales. I have a pair that I brought over with me from England - an old set of my Aunty's but now I'm cooking more semi-professional, I would really love to own a pair that don't jump backwards when you add an ingredients into the bowl on top... :\
    Owning a pair of beautiful scales from you, would feel like a gift from a friend xx Thank you Emma for your honesty, writing and always wonderful well tried recipes xx Happy Easter!

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  91. Fantastic goods from you, man. I've understand your stuff previous to and you are just too magnificent. I really like what you have acquired here, certainly like what you're stating and the
    way in which you say it. You make it entertaining and you still care for to keep
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  92. I made the caramelised white chocolate éclairs of yours two weeks ago and it was honestly one of the tastiest things I've ever made :) Congratulations for the 4th anniversary!
    (I'd love some scales) x

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  93. Congrats on celebrating 4yrs. I stumbled across your blog recently and really love your approach to combining your love of cooking with a way of life! Like your affinity for spatulas, I collect wooden spoons of all shapes and sizes and find myself using them for every dish I prepare. A scale is something I would love. Had one a few years ago but it plain didn't work consistently. I traveled to the Lake District a number of years ago and stayed at Miller Hoew. Bought a few cookbooks that give ingredients in weight. Would love to be able to experiment with those. And even if you don't pick me, happy happy fourth birthday poires au chocolate!

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  94. Happy 4th Birthday! I came across your blog when I was looking for marshmallow recipes at Christmas, and I've been back every few days since! I have a lot of blogs on my reading list, but most of them are American - and while they're great, it's so nice to come here and not have to wonder what I can substitute for various ingredients we don't get over here in the UK! : )

    It's very generous of you to have a giveaway to celebrate! If I'm lucky enough to be picked, I'd love to have one of the spatulas. Despite doing a lot of baking, I only seem to have one decent spatula, so I'm constantly having to wash it during baking escapades!

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  95. Happy 4th birthday!! Really well done on your fab blog!!!
    I still havent found a spatula i love so im curious to see the ones you have so if Im lucky on the draw I wouldnt mind receiving one!! Thanks for your generous offer and hope your blog celebrates many more birthdays!!:)

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  96. Gratsies on your fourth anniversary, yay life!
    the pictures always make me happy here
    Keep up the rad work :)
    Scales would be totally awesome; baking by cup measurements probably isn't the most idyllic, haha!

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  97. Hi Emma! Happy 4th birthday! I love your blog; the way it is simple and clean but still beautiful. I would love to get a new spatula since I only have one ok spatula! Thank you for posting so many fabulous recipes, they make my day every time I read them!!!!

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  98. Joyeux Anniversaire, Emma!

    I really enjoy reading your posts :) so well done for your anniversary :)
    I have a digital scale already and can't imagine cooking without it.
    I'm running a bit late with my Easter cooking but wanted to add that your Hot Cross Buns v.4 are currently proofing in the kitchen :)


    Happy Easter and all the best,


    Agnes

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  99. Emma, I have a ton of spatulas and a lovely scale that I use ALL the time, so I'm not commenting to enter your giveaway. I only wanted to leave a little note congratulating you on 4 awesome years of food blogging and all the goodness that comes with it. I love your space here and I always look forward to new posts :)

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  100. Dear Emma,

    Scales would be wonderful as mine have recently given up the ghost. Thank you for your blog - it's gorgeous

    Happy Easter,

    Berti

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  101. Congrats! Your blog is one of my few favorites, with your eye for design as well as simple and subtle flavors. Spatulas please! I have a scale I love.

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  102. i don`t know how I managed to live without a single spatula (however i started baking not that long ago, just about one and a half years). still my whisk has served me as a spatula no matter how weird it sounds. however every utensil should live up to its meaning: a whisk - for whisking and whipping and a spatula - for carefully mixing these whisked and whipped something together.
    happy aniversary, Emma! i keep admiring the gorgeousness of every post you make! i`ll stay tuned to you forever)))))

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  103. Paula @ Vintage Kitchen31 March 2013 14:38

    A few days ago, after yet another recipe with a different cup/g weight than mine, I was thinking how scales should be mandatory..jaja. But I have two, so the spatulas would be a great gift. I´m kind of a scrape fanatic. TV shows drive me nuts when I see they don´t scrape the whole batter into the pan...! Happy Anniversary Emma!

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  104. Carol Robbins31 March 2013 14:57

    I think it's very nice of you to give a real present, and not something that a company gave you for advertising. It's more meaningful. I seriously need kitchen scales. I've been looking for them, and even had some in my hand yesterday (at Ikea!) and I thought no - wait until you find the right one - because it's that important. I am a baker at heart and I can't believe I've gone 52 years without scales. That is a wrong that must be righted. I even want to use scales to measure coffee. I think it's going to change my life! Congratulations on your 4th anniversary.
    Carol in Toronto

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  105. Congratulations on your milestone! Your blog is so beautiful. I have been eyeing scales for a while.

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  106. I remember that header! And you had that photo of you with the HUGE cake covered in blueberries. That was the selling point for me, any person genius enough to cover a cake in blueberries must have a wonderful blog.


    Happy Anniversary!

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  107. Ilana Bergsagel31 March 2013 15:12

    Happy blog birthday! I only stumbled across your blog last summer, but have pretty much caught up on every recipe (I love recipes, and photos of food probably more than I like the cooking and eating!). I also love reading your university stories - I'm doing a masters in English Lit (although I'm writing my thesis on Early Modern poetry - John Donne, specifically - so not quite in your field) and I did my BA at Cambridge (in Philosophy). The spires, the May bumps, the friends-for-dinner, all those wonderful memories that your writing evokes.

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  108. Dorian Oconnell31 March 2013 15:26

    Congratulations you are such an inspiration

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  109. ami@naivecookcooks31 March 2013 15:39

    Hi Emma first congrats for successful 4 years!! I would love to get scales as I own none!

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  110. Emma, congrats on your four years!! I am sure you will be much more successful in the years to much. I look forward to many more wonderful recipes! I would love to have a scale as I am still learning how to cook properly, I think it would be a great addition to my small kitchen. Thank you for doing this. It is so sweet of you.

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  111. Happy 4th Birthday!! I love your blog and beautiful food (my favorite is still a certain raspberry crepe cake...so pretty!) and would love a spatula!

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  112. You should be so proud of what you have created. Poires Au Chocolat is eye candy for the cooks soul. Should I be so lucky, a scale would be well used and appreciated. Happy 4th Birthday!

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  113. Always loved your blog although I haven't been following it since the start (only found it later) but Happy Birthday bloggy! xD If I were to got chosen, either one will do although the scale would be nice since I never had an electric one :)

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  114. happy birthday. just discovered you, thankfully. i have a new house, new kitchen and am cooking like crazy. a scale is just what i need.

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  115. Happy Birthday! I found your blog about six months ago and love the stories and the recipes. I've always known I need to invest in scales (just made the commitment to a bundt pan, finally).

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  116. Tami Vitcovich31 March 2013 17:43

    Congrats and happy anniversary! all your hardwork has definitely paid off, and "we" your readers are reaping the benefits - lots and lots of eye candy and inspiration! thank you for doing what you do! I have a scale, and i have a million spatulas, however, i hoard them, so one more could be AWESOME.

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  117. I already have a scale, not a fancy electronic one, but a scale....so I'll go with spatulas since I can always use a good spatula...and you can never have too many! Congratulations on the anniversary, and keep up the excellent effort!

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  118. After reading the articles, I realize that I really need a scale....but a girl cant have too many spatulas, so I would be happy with either. Love your blog!

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  119. Awww! Typically thoughtful of you to want to share with us! I would love to have anything you might send, as a keepsake of sorts... a happy baking 'talisman'. I have a 20 year old daughter who loves the UK and is an aspiring writer and I have shared your blog with her :-) I bought some bowls from an antique store nearby and was delighted to see them in J.K. Rowlings' kitchen during an interview with her - synchronicity! Perhaps a spatula to go with them?? Congratulations on your anniversary and all good wishes for a delicious future!!

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  120. Happy Birthday Poires! Love your site, so no matter if I win or not, I would still religiously read your site for delicious recipes. PS - I can never have too many spatulas.

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  121. Happy birthday Poires au Chocolat!! I love reading the blog, the photos and fab recipes always make me hungry! :) I'd love to have some digital scales please, for some reason we don't seem to have any in the Handley kitchen. Hope you celebrate your 4th birthday in style, complete with some of the yummy creations you've been posting on your blog.
    ps Congrats on the boat race today - hope that improved your blog anniversary just that little bit ;)

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  122. Four is an excellent number! Electric scales are one of my favourite tools in the kitchen, but I seem to continue to have bad luck in choosing a brand/model that actually works well... I'm sure you've got a better (and probably well-researched!) choice - I would love one!

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  123. Happy Blog Birthday! Your site has been one of my favourites since I started blogging and your recipes are fail safe as well as amazing. Well done on 4 years! I could definitely do with a decent spatula. I got a set of electric scales for Christmas and I'd be lost without them now but I only have 1 spatula that came free with a magazine and the head is always falling off! Looking forward to reading another year of posts.

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  124. railtontownfield31 March 2013 23:17

    Happy bloggy birthday. I am a regular reader and receive the posts by email but this is my first comment. Your recipes are always very inspiring and I love the fact that you talk about the difficulties as well as the successes.
    If I was lucky enough to have my name picked I would love to have a spatula as I have a couple but have been looking for one to replace my favourite which recently broke.

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  125. Happy blog birthday!! I've been following your blog for a while now (since the 'The Beautiful and Damned cake" post) and I can truly say that your email feeds are one of the emails that I look forward to popping up into my email account.

    If I'm lucky enough to be drawn as a winner, I would love both items equally but really, anything would be amazing. Even a postcard would be wonderful!



    Again, happy blog birthday!

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  126. Wow! Congrats! I just got a kitchen scale, so now I can try your recipes (I've followed your blog for about 6 months but didn't have a scale so I couldn't make anything) but I would love a spatula. My favorite broke today while I was making Easter dinner and then I was without a spatula :(

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  127. Your blog is a great source of inspiration; congrats on turning four!
    I would love a spatula because it is difficult to find well-designed ones in Taiwan...

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  128. Evannia Handoyo1 April 2013 02:53

    Congrats, Emma :) reading this on a language exchange abroad just makes me miss my baking tools and my oven back home! I think it's probably time I got a scale, but I've been so indecisive in choosing one, especially because I don't know a good brand. If my name is drawn, a scale would be so awesome :D all the best with your baking ventures :)

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  129. Venetrise Jackson1 April 2013 02:55

    Happy Birthday!!!!! I would be happy with either a scale or a spatula, because they would get a ton of use at my house!

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  130. Maddy McKane1 April 2013 03:08

    Happy Anniversary, Emma! I read your blog religiously. Thanks for sharing your amazing recipes. I am an avid baker in Canada and have been meaning to get myself a scale for a long time.

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  131. Happy Anniversary! I follow you through my google reader and would find a ton of use for a scale. I've been avoiding recipes that call for weighing ingredients since I don't have one but would love to break out the "weighing ingredients" recipes!

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  132. 4 years that is amazing! And such a lovely idea to do a giveaway. No need to add me into the draw though, just wanted to say a huge congrats. You know how much I love what you do xx

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  133. Abbe@This is How I Cook1 April 2013 03:55

    Congratulations! I love to bake and have yet to break down and buy a scale. I would love too, but right now it seems like a splurge since I've managed all these years without one and have had no complaints. Spatulas, well I'm down to one. Enough said.

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  134. Ali Deatherage1 April 2013 04:00

    Happy blogiversary! It's not hard to believe that this beautiful blog has continued to grow in popularity for such a long time. As a newly self-proclaimed baker, I would love to have my own scale to work with!

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  137. Happy Birthday! I would love the scale...I have yet to purchase one for myself, yet always think how useful one would be.

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  138. I LOVE HOW GEEKY THIS IS!

    I really can't say it enough. I was also a historian (I think you read English?) at Oxford and even though I'm now doing graduate work, I miss conversations that sounded like this.

    And, that said: I would LOVE digital scales! Love, love love.

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  139. Congratulations! I would love a heat-proof spatula! I MELTED what I thought was an OK one making eggs . . . except I didn't realize it until I figured out that what I bit into wasn't cheese.

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  140. So happy for these 4 years!! I would love to own a scale, mine just broke and I use it so much!! Thank you, all the best

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  141. Spatula. Cos I keep buying bad ones

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  142. Didn't realise its been 4 years!! Congratulations.
    Would love to add a spatula to my collection. I think one can never have enough spatulas.. =)

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  143. pamelia chia1 April 2013 07:44

    i'd like a spatula please (: your blog and recipes are amazing, keep posting!

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  144. I have a scale and to be honest I simply do not know how you could manage without one............great blog, love your recipes and the stories you weave around them......makes me want to fire up the oven everytime

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  145. Claire Brereton1 April 2013 08:08

    Oh yes! I would love a decent set of scales. I still have an old imperial set with 1/4 oz weights so the calculation is good for my maths but not really for accuracy. Thank you for your wonderful recipes.

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  146. Thank you Emma~ I would love to enter for the scale. Keep up the great work with this blog - I love baking and your blog, with its lovely pictorials, has been a great go-to for a long time =]

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  147. Congratulations on completing 4 years ! May there be many more! We seldom come across a giveaway without any pre-conditions. Such generosity is rare. I'd love to have a weighing scale. Looking forward to more recipes. Thanks

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  148. Happy blog birthday!! I've been following your blog for a while now and like it a lot!

    If I'm lucky enough to be drawn as a winner, I would love the scale, it could help me quite often.

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  149. Happy Birthday! I've only been following this blog for a couple of weeks but I don't know how I lived without it for so long!
    If I was lucky enough I would love a spatula, it would really help my baking to have one that actually works well, haha!
    Thanks! xxx

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  150. Happy birthday !
    I would love to win one of the spatulas . I recently slightly melted mine haha. Woops.
    Keep up the great baking and photos . :)

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  151. Congratulations on four years of blogging. Your recipes and photographs are delicious :) I would love to win a spatula.

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  152. I've been a home baker for years, and have supplied many cakes to family and friend functions to rave reviews. I've always heard a scale can make baking so much better....willing to take that leap with your help. Congrats to you.

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  153. 3bearsmelbourne1 April 2013 13:08

    Congratulations on your milestone, you are an inspiration to many! I only found you a year ago but then spent several nights salivating over your archives and achievements. I adore my scales and they are one of the few things not hidden in a cupboard but always out ready to use. A good spatula on the other hand I could definitely use. I look forward to following you for years to come.

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  154. You have a beautiful blog and I love browsing around your patisserie. I have been living in France for the past 6 years where scales are everyday business in any kitchen, and since moving back to my home state of Virginia I haven't been able to stock my new kitchen with the famous precision item. Of course, I would be delighted to win one!

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  155. I love your recipes, I love your blog. You make everything look so delicious and you make it look so easy. Sheer talent :) i'd love some scales as I bought some for £4 and they never tare :S thanks :)

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  156. Congrats on 4 years! Still love your chocolate ricotta cake the best :) a set of scales or a spatula wouldn't go astray, either way xo from Perth, Aus

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  157. Stephanie Lin1 April 2013 14:17

    Congrats on your blogs anniversary! This is such a generous giveaway. I'd love to have the scales. Perhaps it'll be one step closer to me becoming a little more serious in the kitchen!

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  158. Happy anniversary! I'm so happy you're still going strong & giving me recipe inspirations from across the pond. Scales or a spatula wouldn't hurt the baking spirit in Washington, D.C., either.

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  159. Congratulations for your blog birthday! I love your blog and its antmosphere. I need both, so i can't tell what i prefer.

    Virginia

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  160. Congratulations, what a brilliant achievement! Thank you for your beautiful recipes and photography over the last four years. Every Easter weekend I make a batch of your hot cross buns with my younger sister and each time look forward to that years alterations. This time around I was able to share them with friends after a day skiing, naturally they were the perfect boost of energy we needed. I'm in the market for a new pair of scales as I can never seem to find ones that last, so it would be great to have a set of your preferred brands. I'm sure you'll have tried and tested many and found a reliable set. Congratulations again!

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  161. MadisonMayberry1 April 2013 15:57

    I remember that header well! I think it was back when I first started reading your blog. I love being able to follow along with your adventures from across the pond. Your recipes continually inspire, Emma!



    A kitchen scale is on my list of items that I need and do not have. So I would love to be included in the giveaway!

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  162. Happy birthday Emma! I think the scales should definitely go to a baker in the US and I have billions of spatulas so count me out the competition but just wanted to stop by and raise an imaginary glass to four fabulous years :-)

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  163. :) new girl.. learning new things.. congrats.. n awesome job here..

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  164. Happy (slightly belated) birthday! What a great choice for two fantastic kitchen tools. I am lucky enough to already have a well-used and appreciated kitchen scale, but a spatula would be fantastic!
    Thank you for so generously sharing your adventures and words with us every week!

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  165. Congratulations! I just made a cake and used the Chocolate Edging from your "Beautiful and Damned" cake, and have never gotten more compliments! I don't have a kitchen scale, so am always trying to convert to cups, I would love to be part of your give-away!

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  167. Wow. Four years! Congrats! :) The scales would definitely be a handy addition to my kitchen. Would love to be more precise with my measurements during baking!

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  169. Happy anniversary - 4 years, what an accomplishment! Would you believe the blender ate my spatula?! So embarrassing. I desperately need a new one and haven't gotten my act together to go out and procure one yet!

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  170. hello. i've dropped in to say congratulations on four years and the many more to come! i've got digital scales but given my track record of melted spatulas, a new one is a welcome addition!

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  171. Congratulations! Love your blog, I've made a few of your recipes now and they've all come out amazeballs. Would love a new spatula as I've managed to melt two (!) in the last month... x

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  172. Wow, congrats! Your blog is charming and I've been reading it only for a few months now, but it's on my daily list. A spatula would be great for me, as the one I have is not high-heat. All the best and look forward to more posts!

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  173. Houseboutique2 April 2013 01:19

    How generous to share your fav tools....having never used scales, and being perplexed as to how to measure precisely the ingredients in your recipes - sans scales....it would a pleasure to measure with scales. Congratulations on four years...with many more to come.

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  174. Loving that no strings approach. My poor ancient scales cannot keep up

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  175. Congrats! I adore your blog, it provides me with so much inspiration. I would love a pair of scales are mine are very unreliable.

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  176. Hi Emma - this is so generous of you! I love the blog and have found it really inspirational. I'd be interested in the scales or the spatulas.

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  177. Thanks so much Emma - I'm moving house soon and was thinking of getting a set of digital scales to inaugurate the move. And of course, one can never have too many heatproof spatulas.

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  178. Hi Emma!

    First of all: congratulations to you and your blog! It became a regular thing for me to do - checking on your blog every Monday. I wish PoireAuChocolat lots of birthdays ahead.

    I would love to receive a spatula. Thank you for the opportunity. And by the way thank you for you answer to my lemon-meringue-tart question.



    Best wishes


    Anna

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  179. Wow congrats on four years! An electric scale would be entirely awesome!!

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  180. Rachel Davis2 April 2013 13:43

    Hi Emma , Congratualtions on your blog being 4 years old! Heres to another delicious 4 years! I enjoy reading your blog all the time, although I am a new reader you give me such inspiration to fight for my dream of cooking and working with food...I have shown your blog to so many of my friends and they cant seem to get enough it and we now cant stop baking so thank you. It has always been my dream to work with food, bake, cook and create recipes but it just seemed to get swamped by everyday life so thank you for insipiring me....
    Its only out of coincidence that my electric scales broke at the weekend meaning that I could not measure my ingredients for hot cross buns and would love a new set so that I can get back to the kitchen! Youre very generous to being giving things away to your fans and we really do appreciate it!

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  181. Hey Emma! Happy Bday and congrats on four years!
    I can't say I was a regular reader for all these years.. but since I found you I had become one! Your blog is really inspiring and has given me so many ideas!
    I am from Greece, but I moved to Manchester in September for my postgraduate studies!
    I love to bake, so you can imagine my dissapointment when I came here and had to leave all my favourite bakeware tools back home.
    I would love a kitchen scale because I have already bought a spatula!
    A spatula, a whisk and a cake tin are all my precious bakeware belongings here in the UK!

    Happy blog birthday!
    xx

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  182. Hi Emma! Happy four years! It is so exciting and such a great accomplishment.

    I initially started reading your blog about a year ago, and I was initially sucked in by...well...you. You see, I felt as though I was reading something written by myself. I am a college student at the University of Pennsylvania. My name is also Emma, and I am an English major, concentrating in Creative Writing. I feel like your blog is a window into my own life. I also love to bake, it is a long time passion of mine, but since coming to school it has been a bit more difficult. I don't have a lot of the necessary equipment, and so it can be hard to make things in my teeny tiny college student apartment kitchen. I would honestly be so thrilled to win either the spatulas or the scales, but the scales would be really special to me since I'm trying to bake on a student budget (somehow, scales hasn't quite fit in there just yet).
    Anyways, I'm a huge fan. I check the blog for updates daily (sometimes more than once a day). I love your writing style. i love your desserts. I'd love to be able to make more of them!

    Happy brithday (to the blog)

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  183. Happy Birthday to you... Happy Birthday to you... Happy Birthday.... Congrats on #4, Emma! And I so clearly remember that header, was it really so long ago that you had it?
    Keep on doing what you're doing Emma and I'll enjoy reading your words for at least another 4 years!
    Tons of love from California,
    E

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  184. I love your blog! My partner & I signed up to your afternoon tea and was disappointed when it was cancelled, but I've been a huge fan of yours for a while now, especially since I've moved to Oxford! Anyway, I would love to own an electric scale, because our current scale is analog and it's quite rubbish at accurately measuring flour or sugar ... and I bake a lot too, so it's really inconvenient. I have loads of spatulas so I won't be needing those. Best wishes to your blog and I hope you will keep it up for at least another 4 years :) xo J

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  185. A very happy fourth birthday to your wonderful blog and, I hope, many more to come! I've just invested in a pair of digital scales and they make such a difference.

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  186. Ode to spatulas!! There is nothing like cleaning a bowl with a spatula, and nothing like the feeling a spatula scraping a bowl!! How fab to know there is a fellow spatula addict out there. I only have one small and one large spatula and find that they rarely make it back into the drawer. Love your blog and Happy Birthday!

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  187. Your bakes are simply beautiful!! I have an analog scale which I want to give away to an organisation I volunteer time and baking with...Irrespective, this is a beautiful website I will keep coming back to...

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  189. Ashlee Beazley3 April 2013 10:08

    Hi Emma!

    I started reading your blog about two years ago, and I love it! The first thing I ever baked off it was your lemon and blueberry loaf. I baked it for my flatmates, who loved it so much they requested a second one a week later. So, thank you!

    Just to prove how universal Poires au Chocolat is, I should tell you I live in Auckland, New Zealand. Also, like you, I have a special place in my heart for medieval history. My major under my Arts degree is history (my other degree is law) - I thoroughly enjoy your random tibits of historical trivia.

    Keep up the fabulous work!

    Ashlee :)

    PS. As I don't have a set of scales, the scales would be wonderful! Thank you!!

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  190. pinkdefender3 April 2013 11:01

    Hi. I was so happy to discover your blog when looking for special Easter recipes, the chocolate simnel (or not so simnel) cake was exactly what I needed! I'm on my granny's old school scales which I adore but they do not help with accurate small measurements. So I would love to receive a set of proper scales for when I can't be bothered converting to oz or need odd amounts (I currently guess A LOT!) Happy birthdays hope there are many more to come :) xxx

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  191. Hi Emma!
    I'm a italian fan. I love your blog and your recipes, but i also love spatulas!
    Happy birthday!

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  192. My friend recently recommended your blog :) I can't tell you how excited I am to get to browse through all your posts!

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  193. Hi Emma,

    I some across your blog recently ...
    Since then I am frequent visitor here . Not only you baking skill is excellent but your blog is aesthetically beautiful too ...

    A very happy fourth birthday to your wonderful blog!

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  194. poiresauchocolat3 April 2013 19:58

    Thanks Mari! I've put you down for the scales.

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  195. Happy Birthday! I'd love a spatula, keep up the good work!

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  196. poiresauchocolat3 April 2013 20:00

    Happy Birthday to Kavey Eats! I'm so pleased you find Poires inspirational. I've put you on the spatula list.

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  197. poiresauchocolat3 April 2013 20:01

    Thank you Priyanka! Would you like me to put you down for the spatulas or scales?

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  198. poiresauchocolat3 April 2013 20:01

    Thank you Lidia :) You're on my spatula list.

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  199. poiresauchocolat3 April 2013 20:07

    Thanks Eva! I've put you on the scale list and I promise to wrap it in an extra layer of paper if I pull your name...

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  200. poiresauchocolat3 April 2013 20:10

    Thank you Amy! I love the sound of the butter butter cake in a loaf tin and I'm glad you liked it. Sorry to hear about the scale-commandeering housemates - sadly living in groups can be tough on kitchenware (though I've always been lucky, thankfully). I've put you on the scales list.

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