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Roasted Pepper Pasta Salad with Burrata
& the first draft of my novel is complete!!
Hi! Welcome to “good mood food” from Kale Me Maybe’s Carina Wolff. If you’ve made it here and aren’t yet a subscriber, come join! You can expect recipes, musings, and faves in your inbox every Wednesday! Paid subscribers get even more! Learn more about my paid membership here. You can also try a week for free!
Today as I was driving, I was brainstorming what I was going to write in this section today, and once again, I found myself thinking about motivation, work, balancing life. I amazed myself with how fixated my mind becomes on one topic, but then I quickly let it go, questioning how much action is really supposed to happen week-to-week. Maybe back in my college days and early 20s I had more wild stories to share, more ups and downs, but these days, things percolate for months and weeks. Plus, these are just normal life things we all work through, and they don’t get resolved overnight. Sometimes they take a lifetime.
I remembered something big did happen this week! I finally finished the first draft of my novel! It’s pretty wild to think that this day has finally come — I started the book in August of 2020, so it has been three years in the making! I probably wrote the first 75% of the book in a few months (it was the pandemic, after all), and wrapping up the end of it has taken longer than I’d like to admit. But I did it! I wrote a whole story, and I’m very pleased with how I wrapped it all up.
Now, this is just the first draft of my first novel, so I definitely have a lot of editing and rewriting to do now that I feel more comfortable with how to write a book. I’m actually really excited about this next part, since I get to really refine my writing and breathe deeper life into the characters that were only somewhat half-baked when I started writing. By the time I got to the end, I really started to see them as people of their own and not just bits and pieces of people in real life.
A lot of people ask me for timeline and next steps, and I don’t have any. I’ve just been doing this on my own, so my goals are to edit, edit, edit, have others read and edit, and then send the book out to agents so I can hopefully get it published! Obviously it would be a dream of mine for it to be sold, but I’m really just taking things one step at a time, and I’m honestly proud of myself for sticking through it and completing it, even if it did take me years! I hope one day everyone gets to experience the world I’ve created!
THINGS I’M LOVING!
I’ve been making my cottage cheese pancake recipe at least once a week, but I made a few tweaks that help make the recipe more nutritious! I am obsessed. I’ve been subbing white flour for oat flour and chia seeds, and I feel like it is the perfect nourishing breakfast. So here’s what to do: use 3/4 cup oat flour, 2 tbsp chia seeds, and 3/4 tbsp baking flour. You’re welcome!!
I bought this Reformation Belgium Linen Dress last year to wear to our Atlanta wedding celebration, but after a covid outbreak, it had to get canceled. I held on to it for a year, and then decided it was time to finally wear it. I brought it to Mexico and Ojai, and it was the perfect warm weather vacation dress (although you best believe I will also be wearing it at home). I just love linen so much, and I’m really glad it’s trending right now because it’s not only elegant and comfortable, but it’s also a sustainable material!
As part of my recommitment to working hard and being creative, I decided it was time to get some new dishware for filming! I found this Speckled Ceramic Dinner Plate at Crate and Barrel, and I was surprised at how affordable it was! It matches well with the rest of my props, and I’m excited to use it for plating. Note that mine is a bit darker/browner than it shows in this photo!
Pasta salad is poppin’ on social media right now, and I am here for it. I decided it was time to bring my love of peppers to a pasta salad, and it did not disappoint. This pasta is meant to serve 2, but I used 6 bell peppers in it, so you can basically call this pasta healthy.
Now if you really wanna boost the nutrients, I recommend using a chickpea pasta or another pasta alternative for that added protein. I used regular white flour pasta here because that’s the taste I wanted in that moment :). I also recommend a sprinkle of hemp seeds on top if you’re looking for another boost!
ALSO! If you leave out the burrata, this dish is totally vegan!!!
*This pasta salad is lightly inspired by both Molly Baz and Baby Tamago!*
Roasted Pepper Pasta Salad with Burrata
Ingredients (serves 2)
8 oz mezzi rigatoni
6 medium bell peppers (I used an even mix of red, orange, and yellow)
1/2 cup thinly sliced red onion
10 basil leaves, thinly sliced
1 4 oz ball of burrata
2 cloves garlic, finely chopped
1 tbsp Dijon mustard
1/2 tsp honey
4 tbsp red wine vinegar
3 tbsp olive oil
1 tsp oregano
1/4 tsp salt
1. Preheat oven to 425 F. Slice peppers in half lengthwise, and remove the insides and seeds. Place face down on a parchment paper lined baking sheet, and bake for 20-30 minutes until peppers are tender and beginning to char in spots. Let cool, and then cut into thin, 2” slices. You can remove the skin if you want, but I left mine on and just removed anything that was too charred.
2. While peppers are cooking, prepare pasta al dente, according to package. Drain, and let cool, tossing in a little bit of oil to prevent sticking.
3. To prepare dressing, whisk everything together in a small bowl until smooth. Taste, and season with more salt and pepper if desired.
4. When everything is ready, add pasta, peppers, red onion, and basil to a large bowl. Add the dressing and toss until everything is evenly coated. Break the burrata up with your hands, and spoon chunks of it on top of the salad. Serve immediately or refrigerate until you need it — the flavors will meld into the pasta and get even better!
IN CASE YOU MISSED IT!
Last week, paid subscribers received a recipe for these amazing taters! They’re so creamy and nutrient-packed!