Meet Kendall Melton, Austin Baker

| 11/7/2012 4:13:00 PM

As a child growing up in Dallas, Kendall Melton loved helping her mom in the kitchen. She started with small tasks at age 6 and gradually took on more responsibilities. But her favorite activity was baking, and when her mom brought home The Teddy Bear Baker, a book for young cooks, she was hooked.

Kendall Melton
Austin baker Kendall Melton studied theater but chose the kitchen stage for her career. Photo By Laura Crow

“I went through it page by page, baking every recipe in that book,” said Kendall, now a professional pastry chef at a hot, new restaurant in Austin, Texas. “My mom loved the peanut butter cookies and asked me to make those for her all the time.”

Kendall didn’t start out to be a baker. She loved theater and received a degree in theater arts from Loyola Marymount University. After a stint working in Hollywood, she returned to her baking roots, earning a certification in baking and pastry arts from Texas Culinary Academy in Austin. She believes both career fields have a lot in common.

“Every day you're pushing your limits, preparing for service, which is very similar to preparing for the production of a play,” she said. “Improvisation is essential in acting, and being able to adapt to changing situations and successfully deliver is your goal every day in a kitchen.”

Though Kendall has a healthy repertoire of recipes, creating something new is always a thrill. “It's especially thrilling when it works exactly the way you wanted it to, or you're able to fix it by improvising if it's not exactly what you envisioned,” she said.

Margot Verhulst
11/25/2012 4:31:08 AM

Kendall is very talented! I had some of her delicious pastries for Mother's Day Brunch this year. Absolutely delish!

Mary Karish
11/11/2012 12:44:27 AM

I had to try the banana muffin just to make sure it is as good as it sounded, it was heavenly. I guess my next project is to grow my own banana tree to ensure constant supply of home grown bananas. I also now have a good reason to go the liquor store, I need my vodka for the pies. Very interesting!

Martha Ausburn
11/8/2012 5:22:45 PM

Great article, darling girl, but what restaurant in Austin does she work at????