A Touch of Sweet: High school junior bakes cookies for a good cause

STORY BY MELODY XU, PHOTOS BY ARYA NASIKKAR

Middle College junior Amanda Yun spent her summer break this year in an unconventional way: creating her own online bakery.

A Touch of Sweet Bakery specializes in baked goods ranging from matcha shortbreads to toffee and walnut chocolate chip cookies (Yun’s self-proclaimed signature item), all made from scratch with organic ingredients.

All profits are donated to local organizations selected by Yun, such as Fresh Approach (a Bay Area nonprofit aiming to increase accessibility of healthy food in lower income households) and Pie Ranch (a sustainable and organic farm in Pescadero) in order to support sustainable agriculture, which is important to Yun.

“I take that idea of organic ingredients into my baking, because I noticed that there are a lot of tasty baked goods on the market right now, but there aren’t that many that actually use organic ingredients,” Yun said. “My goal is to fill that gap and provide delicious baked goods made with high quality and organic ingredients.”

Yun poses for a photo with plates of freshly baked cookies.

While building a project like A Touch of Sweet has countless facets, from website design to applying for licenses, Yun said recipe testing was the most time-consuming; it was a long, iterative process. She partially credits the willingness of her friends and family willing to taste endless trials of goods. 

“It’s kind of like the scientific method we learned in school; I would make one version of the recipe, and then I would taste that to see what I thought needed changing, and then I would change that small variable and then bake it again,” Yun said. “It’s just a lot of baking and trying and baking and trying.”

Yun now aims to expand and raise money from the community to achieve her goals of supporting the causes she’s passionate about. As one of her first major fundraisers, Yun donated cookies to a fundraiser to help Afghan refugees in need, and she hopes to continue gaining community traction. 

“I just hope that people see this as a way to support these causes that will eventually come back to them,” Yun said.

From start to present, building the bakery has been a worthwhile and meaningful experience for Yun.

“[A Touch of Sweet] is kind of a creative outlet for me,” Yun said. “Sometimes it’s hard to find time to do things that you love, especially when you have school to balance. This is a way for me to ensure that I’m still taking time to do fun stuff and things that are important to me … it’s just been really fun to turn something that I love into a bigger project.”

A Touch of Sweet Bakery is open for orders via its website.

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