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Crave baker wins TV cupcake war

by:  Chef Kyra Bussanich

Lake Oswego resident Kyra Bussanich, owner of Crave Bake Shop, is the first winner from the Northwest of Food Network's highly rated show, 'Cupcake Wars.' She is also the first-ever gluten-free champion of the competition - competing on taste, texture and appearance against traditional bakers who had no restrictions on their ingredients.

Bussanich first competed on the show in Dec. 2010. Though judges crowed about her baking, she came in second. A year later, she was asked to compete again on the episode titled, 'The Closer 100th Episode.' As the winner, selected from four bakers who had all previously competed, Bussanich catered a party celebrating the 100th episode of the hit TV show, The Closer, starring her namesake actress Kyra Sedgewick.

Bussanich is currently writing a book on gluten-free baking and lifestyle for Ten Speed Press, an imprint of Random House.