About Pastrygirl


Who am I: My name is Anita and I am a Bay Area native, living and working around San Francisco, with a lifelong addiction to all things sweet. My love for baking has led me down some unexpected but very rewarding (and delicious) paths.


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.

After graduating, I fulfilled one of my lifelong dreams and worked full time in a beautiful little bakery in the East Bay, turning out cakes, croissants, and chocolate. At the same time my curiosity about photography, which sprung from a desire to document all my experiences in the kitchen, evolved into a professional passion. I had started Dessert First as a way to combine several of my interests: baking, photography, and writing. Now it had become a springboard for me to share with world how I feel about the beauty and joy of food.


Where I’m going: I’m still constantly expanding my horizons, filling myself with inspirations and ideas. I’m always trying new ideas in the kitchen, and experimenting with new ways to capture the perfect image of the results. My creativity is charged by everything around me: cookbooks, pastry chefs I admire, restaurants I visit, the sights and smells as I walk down the street.

My hope for you when you visit Dessert First is to learn how to make professional-level pastries in your home kitchen. I also provide reviews of my favorite baking tools, cookbooks, and pastry shops (mostly around the San Francisco Bay Area where I live). Recently, in the last couple years, I’ve been dabbling in kid-friendly baking after having a daughter, and the art of Chinese baking. You’ll find those recipes on my site as well.

I do freelance work as a food writer, stylist, and photographer. Here is a list of where my work has appeared. I am also the author of three cookbooks, Field Guide to Cookies,  Field Guide to Candy, and Lollipop Love. I was extremely lucky to get the opportunity to do this books, and it was all because of my blog. You’ll never know where life takes you, so just get out there and start doing it!

If you want to know a little more about me and this site, click on over to my faq.

Thank you for visiting, and please leave a note or send me an e-mail at anita {at} dessertfirstgirl {dot} com. I look forward to hearing from you. Happy baking!