Lifestyle blogger, writer, and home chef, Athena Calderone oozes the domestic goddess-ness of one truly at ease in any sensory environment; whether at home in her kitchen, or picking wild berries in a field, Athena gives the impression that style, and beauty, are just happenstance; a natural by-product of a life well-lived. We caught up with Athena at her East Hampton property, where we outfitted her in one of our favorite brands, La Ligne, whose modern take on the classic stripe is much like Athena’s take on food: new, fresh and foolproof. It turns out life at home with Athena is just as fun – and inspiring – as one would imagine…
My love of food truly brought my entire life into focus.
Athena believes that beauty stems from self-expression, and she continues to push the boundaries of what that means; whether through interior design, or food, or fashion, her deliberate, curated existence is inspiration to all those seeking to live a more swoony life. Her latest project, a cookbook, reveals the next chapter in what so far has been a life of experimentation and discovery. “I’ve followed many paths,” she says, “from acting in my twenties to interior design in my thirties. But it wasn’t until I embraced my love of cooking that I found the missing part of my creative puzzle.”
T-Shirt, Bustier La Ligne Shorts One Teaspoon Shoes Malone Souliers Earrings Danielle Nicole Bracelets Roxanne Assoulin Glasses Cutler & Gross
I felt I had so much creative energy bursting inside of me without a place to have it land.
Food has connected me more deeply to myself, to my family, and to my creative instincts.
Athena found her voice through food; her kitchen became a studio of sorts, which saw much trial (and some error!) but eventually led to the creation of Cook Beautiful. Featuring seasonal recipes in eye-swoony presentations, as well as tips and suggestions from everything from table settings to flowers to small parting gifts to offer your dinner guests, the book is a bible of entertaining beautifully, thoughtfully, and of course, with passion. Here is one of our favorite fall dishes – just in time for Thanksgiving.
Delicata Squash Agrodolce
2 delicata squash, seeds removed and cut into ½ inch rounds
3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
4 tablespoons honey, divided
salt and freshly cracked pepper
½ teaspoon minced red habanero chile, minced
½ cup white wine vinegar
1 large lime, grated and juiced
5 or 6 fresh sage leaves, very thinly sliced
2 tablespoons pepitas, toasted
Preheat the oven to 375. Place the squash in a large bowl and drizzle it with the oil and 2 tablespoons of the honey. Season with salt and pepper and toss until evenly coated.
Transfer the squash to two large rimmed baking sheets, spreading it into a single layer. Roast until golden brown, 12 to 15 minutes per side, flipping the squash halfway through baking.
Meanwhile, in a small saucepan, bring the habanero, vinegar, lime juice, and remaining 1 tablespoon honey to a boil. Season with a pinch of salt. Reduce the heat and simmer until the mixture is syrupy, 8 to 10 minutes.
Just before serving, spoon the agrodolce over the squash. Garnish with sage, pepitas, and lime zest.
Cook Beautiful is available for order here