Hi! I’m Melissa.

Melissa CraneThis blog tells my food journeys through stories and photographs. The recipes on this blog are inspired by a fusion of Southern and Asian flavors, travel and family traditions.

I typically post new recipes and stories one to two times a week. To keep up with my latest posts, subscribe via RSS or to my Email Newsletter.

When I’m not writing about food, I’m photographing it: I work with food all the time as a food photographer, specializing in branding and design for food & lifestyle businesses. If you are interested in working with me on your next photography or branding project, please contact me at melissa@dotdotinteractive.com.com.

PR agencies and Brands, please view Disclaimer section below.

Lifelong Love Affair with Food

As the daughter of Taiwanese immigrants who opened a neighborhood Chinese restaurant in the mountains of Appalachia, I was immersed into the world of food from the moment I was born. You could say that I grew up as a restaurant baby.

When I left home for college I did practically anything I could to “escape” the food industry, but as it turns out – the love for food is in my blood. It draws me back every single time I try to get away. I’ve embraced it, and what do you know, I love every moment of it.

With every intent of leaving the South after finishing college, I fell in love with a New York turned Alabama turned Atlanta boy. We got married and decided to settle down in Atlanta. And I am glad we did. Atlanta is a food lover’s dream come true, with its amazing restaurants, small food businesses and local farms & markets.

Paul and I now live in in the suburbs of Atlanta, Georgia with our baby girl and two sweet rescue dogs.


Things I Love

When I’m not busy working away behind a computer, shooting away behind a camera or taking care of Mini-me (she’s the one in the orange dress above)… I’m probably training for my next road race, cooking up a storm in the kitchen or daydreaming about my next scuba diving location.

I can’t help indulging in chocolate and sangria (but not necessarily at the same time). I am at my happiest when I am near the ocean, and will do just about anything to be near it.

About this Blog

The mission of Dash of East is: Inspire a healthy, responsible lifestyle through stories.

I write about about recipes inspired by Asian cuisine and Southern flavors. I also cover travel stories, with destinations concerned in environmental conservation and responsibility, specializing in locations near the ocean.

Work With Me

There are many ways for us to work together, and I would love to hear about your next project!

Some of the ways we can work together include:
– Food Photography & Styling
– Food Writing
– Giveaways and Product Promotion
– Sponsored Posts
– Events, Conferences and Sponsored Trips
– Travel Reviews

For more information, please visit the Work With Me page.

Contact Me

Email me!  I would love to hear from you: melissa@dashofeast.com
You can also follow me on Facebook and Twitter.


For PR companies: please understand I will only consider (but, do not guarantee) product reviews, promotional events and travel articles that fit within the brand and personality of Dash of East.  I will not write reviews about products, events or travel destinations that I have not personally tried or have been invited to attend. If you do not hear back from me (via email) within 2 business days, please consider this a kind decline of your request.  Thank you!

The majority of the photographs on this blog are available for licensing, rates are based on coverage and usage, please contact me (melissa@melissacrane.com) to inquire about availability and rates.

Very occasionally I will post sponsored updates from my ad network on Twitter and Facebook. These updates will always be tagged with #ad, so you will know when those specific updates are sponsored.