Butternut Squash, Books & North Carolina


Good Morning everyone!

I am back from my travels in North Carolina…a successful work trip it was. Phew! I arrived in the NC state and we headed straight to dinner at none other than a fabulous french restaurant in the Proximity Hotel. I had sweet potato bisque, roasted beet and chèvre salad and scallops with tomato butter sauce! YUM!

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I can never say no to a Tarte Citron….


I was actually thinking about this wonderful part of my job where I am paid to travel to random cities and I seem to always attract GEMS wherever I go! This restaurant was definitely a hidden gem. I also really LOVE being on the airplane…it sounds weird but it’s almost a solace, a place of peace for me where I have full permission to stare out the window and do absolutely nothing…OR write my maid-of-honor speech for my sister’s upcoming wedding, plan my week to come, read a book….or two in this past case 🙂 Flying in the air gives me a sense of calm focus….I ALWAYS get a window seat! I don’t care how many times I bother the aisle seat to use the restroom. There is nothing better than sitting, staring out at the clouds and dreaming!

That’s my little sense of gratitude for the day….

Yes, so I read two books that I am going to completely recommend if you have not already read them. These books are fun, entertaining and particularly very inspirational to women!

The first is “White Jacket Required” written by Jenna Weber who has a very popular blog…Eat, Live Run. This is a story really more than anything of transformation in a woman’s life….the journey.



The next is of course having to do with the french….The book is:

“Ooh La La” written by Jamie Cat Callan. She writes about her travels through France and her interviews and conversations with several french women. This is a page turner. I find it so fascinating how Jamie spent time in Paris just mesmerized with these women and their culture. Enough to keep a journal of what they were saying and eventually write a book about it….beauty regimens, love, romance, childhood, food, art…..



Last but not least, I made probably the best roasted butternut squash I have ever made in my life. I turned to my all time favorite cookbook…

Apple for Jam, written by Tessa Kiros   

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This is the perfect comfort recipe….sweet and buttery and roasted to perfection. I served this with a rotisserie chicken and some sautéed greens. Divine!


Baked Butternut Squash with Butter and Brown Sugar

adapted from “Apples for Jam” 


1 1/2 lbs butternut squash (I bought already peeled and cubed)

4 tbsp brown sugar

3  tbsp butter

salt to taste

1/4 cup water

2 bay leaves


Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Generously butter an ovenproof baking dish. Sprinkle 2 tablespoons of the sugar on the bottom of the dish. Arrange the butternut squash on top of the sugar evenly. Dot with butter and sprinkle remaining  2 tablespoons of sugar over the top. Sprinkle with sea salt evenly over the squash. Pour 1/4 water around the side of the dish and add 2 bay leaves. Bake for 50-60 minutes. The squash should be glazed and golden and even dark in some places from the sugar. Serve and Enjoy!


Cheers to the weekend, the kickoff to the holidays…I plan to do my last minute Christmas shopping, buy a beautiful dress to wear for the festivities, possibly bake something delicious and start the celebration…


6 thoughts on “Butternut Squash, Books & North Carolina

  1. Krista…love today’s post. I’ve gotten a little behind on reading your blogs. I too love time on the airplane for the very same reasons you listed. I loved “White Jacket Required” but haven’t read “Ooh La La” so I will be sure and read that one. You always have great recommendations! I will make your soup, it sounds and looks fantastic. Sounds like your trip was fabulous! Can’t wait to see you soon! Love your blog and you! Hugs and a wink! aunt jenny


  2. O my krista what a special person you are,you enjoy life and live it to the fullest.i love your job,your travels your food,you are a inspiration to all of us,I went to your parents house,I heard simba braking.he is so cute,they were not home at the time. And yes get that speech ready.,a day we so look forward to.Eleni is like you in a way Krista,she text me yesterday and said she has time off work,and booked a flight to Amsterdam.She is going alone,so of course I will b worried.She wants an adventure,but she won’t b with us for Xmas which makes me sad.By the way I love North Carolina.Merry Christmas sweetheart. Evelyn

    Sent from my iPad



  3. It’s always exciting reading your blog Krista. I love your attitude of celebrating life in whatever you do. I plan on reading your fun books for my new year’s resolution. And I love this recipe!


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