Julia Cresta has what it takes to be “The Greatest Baker of 2020”. She just needs a little help getting there.

The 24-year-old Richland resident is a contender for “The greatest baker”Online competition, which pits bakers from around the world against each other for a chance to win $ 10,000 and get a feature in Bake from Scratch Magazine.

A graduate of Deer Lakes High School, Cresta always wanted to own her own bakery and café. She recently quit her job as a pastry chef in a restaurant to devote all of her time and effort to making this dream come true.

The cash prize and the magazine function would help immensely.

“I kind of have the hope of humbly keeping the back of my head that I could win,” Cresta said.

The competition consists of six rounds: Top 10, Top 5, Group Winners, Quarter-finals, Semi-finals and Finals.

The winner will be the baker who ultimately receives the most votes.

Voting takes place via Facebook. People must have a valid Facebook account to vote.

Voting can be done in two ways. People can vote for their favorite baker once a day for free, or they can buy extra votes. Paid votes will benefit Share our strengths “No Kid Hungry” campaign, which works to end child hunger.

“To anyone who wants to vote for me, I just want to say thank you in advance, and they probably won’t regret it,” Cresta said.

Cresta rose from the Top 10 to the Top 5, where she was in second place at the time of this writing. Voting for the Top 5 ends on November 12.

Messages sent to competition representatives have not been returned at press time.

Cresta comes from a family of cooks. His grandparents owned La Villa, an Italian restaurant in Richland, which is now closed. She spent a good part of her childhood there.

“My grandparents came to pick us up from school. They would take us to the restaurant for a few hours. I grew up in the kitchen with them doing so many things, ”Cresta said.

“I learned a lot from (my grandparents) for sure,” Cresta said. “My whole family really loved to cook. My dad was very interested in it and taught me tips and tools and things like that.

Cresta originally wanted to be a chef, but ended up falling in love with baking while attending the Academy of Culinary Arts at Indiana University in Pennsylvania. She graduated in Culinary Arts and Advanced Baking and Pastry Arts in 2016.

“I like, with baking, just kind of the feel and the way things look when they’re done,” Cresta said.

Cresta’s signature pastry consists of chocolate chip cookies. She is passionate about cakes and cake decorating and has a weakness for French macarons.

Some of his cake creations are a bit out of the ordinary. Over the summer, for example, he was asked to bake a cake that looked like a crawfish boil.

“The top basically looked like a pot overflowing with crayfish and corn and baked potatoes, steam and bubbles,” Cresta said. “I just thought it was a crazy request.”

Cresta entered the contest on a whim after seeing him on social media. Since quitting her job to focus on starting her own business, she said the opportunity couldn’t have come at a better time.

“I’m just diving head first into business plans and finances just to get the business going that I want to do,” Cresta said.

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