Hello!

January 17th, 2006

Chocolate_mousse_genoise_cake_1

Who am I: My name is Anita and I am a Bay Area native, living and working around San Francisco, whose lifelong addiction to all things sweet has developed into a happy baking and photography hobby.

Pithiviers_1 

Where I’ve been: In 2005 I took a six-month professional pastry course at Tante Marie’s Cooking School, which focused on classic French patisserie.  I braved the perils of burning sugar, overwhipped egg whites, and melting fondant to make croissants, croquembouche, and tarte tatin.  A record of my travails can be found at my Flickr page.

Strawberry_creme_damande_tart

Where I’m going: I haven’t made the jump to full-time pastry; instead, I got hooked on documenting my and my classmates’ creations during pastry class.  Right now I enjoying baking what suits my fancy (I am working my way through several of Pierre Hermé‘s books) and taking pictures of them. I hope you enjoy them!

I am also available for freelance work as a food writer, stylist, and photographer. Please contact me at pastrygirl.dessertfirst(AT)gmail(DOT)com.

Mentions in the Press

Baking911 – Feature recipe in November 2007 newsletter.

Edible East Bay – Charles and the Chocolate Factory, feature article, Fall 2007

Photo shoot for private client, July 2007.

C&H SweetTalkProfiled in summer 2007 newsletter.

Schmap Travel GuidesFood photos selected for Schmap Paris Guide.

Second place in Edibility, Third place Overall, Does My Blog Look Good in This, June 2007

Edible East Bay – A Day in a Life Full of Chocolate, feature article and cover photo, Winter 2007

Food and WineHonorable Mention in Food Photography Contest, October 7, 2006

First place in originality, Does My Blog Look Good in This, October 2006

First place, Does My Blog Look Good in This, September 2006

Chow Food Media BlogHow to Make a Pastry Chef Happy September 26, 2006

KQED Bay Area Bites – Featured Post September 19, 2006

Slashfood – Featured Post July 3, 2006, August 28, 2006, September 12, 2006, October 10, 2006, October 27, 2006, December 27, 2006

Food and Wine – Top Five Posts in the Food and Wine Blogosphere, Week of July 31, 2006

Typepad Featured Blog, July 29, 2006

Taste TV Featured Blog

GothamistArticle on strawberries, June 21, 2006

SFist – Food Blog Round-Up July 10, 2006; May 29, 2006; May 22, 2006; May 15, 2006; September 11, 2006; September 25, 2006; October 2, 2006; October 16, 2006

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32 Comments so far ↓

  • Myko #1

    Congratulations on your site!! Such a great start for all your pastry adventures.

    Here’s to all the fabulous creations I can’t wait to see (or taste).

  • Eugene #2

    Wonderfull idea on creating a site for sharing your baking advantures.

    Will this become a menu for our tasting advantures as well?

  • Anita #3

    Myko,
    Thanks for everything! You will surely be first in line to try everything!:)

    Eugene,
    Of course you will be next in line!! I need to share these creations so I don’t have to eat them all myself!

  • keiko #4

    Hi Anita – I’m so happy you’ve finally got your own blog! Everything looks great, I’ll keep coming back here not just to enjoy your gorgeous creations but also to ask stupid questions about pastry making (hope you don’t mind…) Happy blogging!

  • Anita #5

    Keiko,
    I am so happy you have dropped by!You should know that your beautiful blog is one of my biggest inspirations, and I can’t imagine you needing advice from _me_ on how to make your creations even lovelier, but I will be very happy to “talk baking” with you anytime!:)

  • Robyn #6

    Whoa, Anita! I am so impressed–great job. A LOT of great stuff on here. Can’t wait to scour your site top to bottom for all your tips, recipes and links. ; ) Hopefully I can contribute back and give you some ideas as I’m testing in my kitchen as well!

  • Zeynep #7

    Great site!!! I just decided to fly all the way from Istanbul,Turkey to San Francisco Culinary Academy to take the professional patisserie course there. This site is a definite inspiration! Thanks…

  • Suzie #8

    Hi Anita, I love your site. I came across your blog looking for info on Tante Marie’s–I’m wondering what you thought of the school–I’m considering taking the six-month course myself. Thanks, Suzie

  • David #9

    You are absolutely beautiful. Marry me!

    David

  • Tana #10

    Beautiful site. I just found you via the Featured Sites at Typepad, looking in their Food/Wine category. (Waving from Santa Cruz.)

  • ukrit anuphap #11

    ยินดีครับที่ได้เข้ามาเยี่ยมชมเว็บคนไทยเราเหมือนกัน
    ขนมน่าอร่อยนะครับ ยังไงจะแวะมาบ่อยๆ

  • Rakesh Rai #12

    Hi Anita, came to your website from another Food Blog and its been a pleasure surfing thru the pages. The desserts look amazing, I love baking and am surely going to revisit your pages again and again to try out the recipes. What lovely pictures, I hope I come close to making my desserts looks even a bit as tempting as shown here. Keep up the good work.
    Rakesh

  • Christine #13

    Beautiful pictures, beautiful recipes, beautiful blog! :)

  • Anita #14

    Zeynep,
    You will have to let me know how your like the course! Best of luck!

    Suzie,
    Thanks for stopping by. I’ll e-mail you my opinions.

    Tana,
    Thanks for visiting! I think your blog is great too, congrats on being featured!

    Rakesh,
    I’m glad you like the blog. Come by again, let me know how your baking is going!

    Christine,
    Thanks so much for visiting and for the kind words!

  • Dorie Greenspan #15

    Hi Anita,

    I friend just told me about your blog and I was thrilled to visit and see your gorgeous photos of our favorite cookie, Pierre Herme’s Korova Cookies, now known as World Peace Cookies. Isn’t it extraordinary that something so simple and so easy to make can be sooooooooo good!

    Many thanks for your kind and generous words about my cookbooks. I hope you will enjoy baking from my newest book, Baking, From My Home To Yours, as much as you’ve enjoyed Paris Sweets. (And, for your reader who asked, the book is now in stores and online.)

    I’ll be visiting often to admire your beautiful work.

    Again, my thanks — Dorie

  • Chubby #16

    Hi Anita,

    I want to send you the hat that you wanted… where should I send it? Also do you want one for yourself as well or just your sweetie?

    Your Pal,

    Chubby

  • melissa sue pausanos #17

    your site looks so good.i just started my blog..and i really dont know how to do it.i have the passion for food hope you can give me some tips.thanks…

  • Anne #18

    Hi Anita,

    I’m looking for 1 1/2″ tartlet tins, and for some reason, my browser has taken me to your blog. (I can’t find any, by the way!) How delightful your website is, and your pastries and photographs are beautiful. I, too, am here in the Bay Area, and I’ve always loved baking. The picture of the colorful Macarons intrigues me, and I would love to know more about them. Do you have a recipe for them here? Thanks for the enjoyment of having visited you, and keep making your creations. They’re lovely.

  • Tanna #19

    Fantastic photos, lovely site.

  • Vicky #20

    Hi Anita,
    You’ve got gorgeous photography on this site! I espeically like the Mozart cake. I read that you went to Tante Marie – what was your experience like there and is the school expensive? I’ve been thinking of a career change – any insight you have would be much appreicated. Thanks!

  • Danielle #21

    Hi, i just love your beautiful site! i have recently decided that i would love to become more serious about baking, and am exploring the worlds of others who already do! please tell me, i have searched around a bit on your site…. do you have a posting about those kitchen utensils that you absolutely couldn’t live without – such as different size baking tins, etc. you make such a variety of things and i would love to know your thoughts on what you think are absolute ‘must-haves’ for the kitchen cupboard! a good time of the year for thinking about such things, i think – give people ideas about what hints to drop to those who are likely to be buying christmas presents ;)
    Many thanks,
    Danielle

  • Laurie Murphy #22

    On my never ending search for a shortbread bar like the Eileen’s Buttery Shortbread bars, I keep ending up at your site and I’m really glad. The first time I visited your site, you had made the Black and White Cake from Dorie Greenspan’s new book. I made it for my son’s birthday and it was not a big hit. I guess we just prefer chocolate cakes. I’ve been making the Sour Cream Chocolate Cake from San Francisco a la Carte for years and it is a family favorite. This time, I found your piece on Cocoa Bella. We found it on our first visit to Bloomingdales and now it is a must do. It’s not even that bad on our waistlines because I can’t afford for it to be! Could you possibly give me some tips on how I might recreate the Shortbread bars from Tom’s Cookies? Most of the recipes I try taste more like Lorna Doones.

    Love your blog, keep it up!

    Laurie

  • priscilla #23

    Great and inspirational site! Just wondering what your thoughts are on your experience at Tante Marie’s.

    Any one thing a novice baker should aboslutely know?

  • laura #24

    Hi,

    I love your site and will try the goat cheese cheesecake recipe.

    Regards,
    Laura

  • dreamsicle #25

    Hi Anita,
    I just love reading your site and seeing all those pretty pics u post. I am an international student studying in the Bay Area and am considering doing a pastry arts program after I graduate. Right now I’m torn between the program offered by Tante Marie’s and the California Culinary Academy. I’m more for the experience than seeing it as a career. What are your opinions or recommendations? Thanks and keep up with the good work.
    dreamsicle

  • Chong #26

    Hi. I love your pictures! Can you tell me what kind of cameria you use to take these beautiful pictures. I love you site too! Can’t wait to read your updates! :D Have a great day now!-
    chong

  • isi #27

    great site and great photos and great work! you inspire me really! :)

  • kate #28

    Hey Anita ,
    this was long overdue ! I’ve been such a fan of your desserts/your writing /everything about your blog and I’ve actually opened this page today to show my mother in law your blog :))
    I wish u did’nt live in SF but in HK then i’d probably be hanging down around your apartment hoping to catch you someday and bake with you or somethin.Or atleast had i you were visiting HK we would have met up :))
    Keep up the good work Anita , its always a pleasure visiting your blog.

  • Jen #29

    hi anita!
    the hazelnut cake looks wonderful! when i went to france, the first place i went to get pastries was sadaharu aoki- for my birthday the other day i made a bittersweet chocolate roulade with maccha cream, and i thought of you both.

  • Mansi #30

    wow Anita, I live in the bay area too, more like east bay!! great to know you…do you offer baking lessons?? b’coz I’d definitely be interested in learning from you!!:)

    btw, TasteTV left a comment on my blog too asking me to join them, but I’m kinda confused how to do it…I saw your blog listed there…so could you point me in the right direction please?

    Thanks,

    -Mansi

  • Sudhakar #31

    Hi Anita.
    What a great site. You have a good eye for a picture and your cakes look amazing. Wish my cakes looked like yours.

  • Hany Jong #32

    Amazing site! I just stumbled upon your site while browsing for dessert related stuff. You have such amazing talents. Your baked goods look awesome and your pictures are great too! Most importantly, your blog is in my fav colors (pink & green).

    I think you’d make an amazing pastry chef ^_^

    Cheers!

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